Mexico slams Donald Trump bid to sway foreign investors

January 7, 2017 3:02 pm

Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal

has rejected any threats aimed at deterring foreign companies from investing in the country, after US President-elect threatened two big automotive manufacturers with heavy tariffs if they export their Mexican-made cars to the US.
In an apparent reference to Trump’s recent remarks, the Mexican economy ministry said in a statement on Friday that the government in Mexico City “categorically rejects any attempt to influence the investment decisions of companies on the basis of fear or threats.”
The statement came a day after Trump said the Japanese Toyota Motor Corp, a large multinational corporation, should pay a hefty fee if it manufactured its Corolla cars for the American market at a plant in Mexico.
“Toyota Motor said will build a new plant in Baja, Mexico, to build Corolla cars for US. NO WAY! Build plant in US or pay big border tax,” Trump said in a tweet on Thursday.
On Tuesday, the US president-elect had also tweeted that the American General Motors Company (GM), another multinational corporation which designs and manufactures vehicles and vehicle parts, had to “pay big border tax” if it decided to import its cross-border production to the US.
GM, however, reportedly imports only a small percentage of its Chevrolet Cruze small cars from its Mexico-based plants.
Trump argues that these automakers and the like prefer to manufacture their vehicles in Mexico in lower-cost factories, which he says costs American jobs.
The tweets were Trump’s latest threats to impose heavy tax on companies that have moved their production, fully or partially, to Mexico and ship their products back to the US. He has already threatened a wide range of American companies, from US retailers and defense contractors to tech companies, to either leave Mexico or pay hefty taxes.
Mexico’s economy ministry, however, opposed Trump’s view, saying “the investments that are made in Mexico, the United States and Canada benefit the three countries thanks to the integration of our chains of production.”
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