Mexico's Obrador has to stand up to Trump

Posted July 05, 2018

Another place that's felt the cold wind of President Trump's threatened trade wars is the US's neighbour, Mexico.

The next president will also inherit a simmering dispute with USA counterpart Donald Trump over migration and trade, with talks to rework the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) unresolved, pressuring Mexico's peso currency.

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between Canada, Mexico and the United States is also a key factor in future worldwide relations.

The President of the United States took to Twitter to congratulate Lopez Obrador with the election victory, saying that he was looking "very much forward to working with him".

Lopez Obrador said that he has already met with businessmen after his crushing victory in Sunday's election and that he planned a Tuesday night meeting on inviting worldwide figures - including Pope Francis, rights activists and the United Nations - to help come up with a plan to solve Mexico's problem of soaring violent crime.

"We are going to achieve a peaceful transformation, without violence", Obrador said.

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"If there is any change, I think it's going to be for the worse".

Third time proved a charm for the left-wing candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador who has claimed victory in Mexico's presidential election.

Lopez Obrador, the first leftist president since the end of one-party rule in 2000, won between 53 and 53.8% of votes, according to a quick count by the electoral authority, more than double the total for his nearest rival. Ricardo Anaya is the candidate of a right-left coalition. Lopez Obrador himself refused to accept his two previous presidential losses, and in 2006 his supporters set up a protest camp that caused months of chaos in downtown Mexico City.

The former mayor of Mexico City, Amlo, 64, has promised profound change under his leadership.

Lopez Obrador's approach to security is one of the first signs of how he is breaking from the mold of the typical Mexican presidency.

But after winning the election, he told Milenio TV he would respect the ongoing talks, with the aim of forging a deal that is good for Mexico.

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He said contracts obtained under energy reforms passed under President Enrique Pena Nieto will be scrutinized for any corruption or illegality, but otherwise contracts will be honored.

"We will search for a relationship with the USA government based on friendship and development, always inculcated with mutual respect and in defense of our compatriots, immigrants who live and work in that country", he said.

Commonly known by his initials, "AMLO", Lopez Obrador has proposed measures like a huge increase in infrastructure spending, but it's not clear how he can do that if he fulfills a promise not to raise taxes.

But the prospect of Lopez Obrador rattled markets leading up to the election. "We are overweight local currency government bonds and the Mexican peso". Both Republican and Democratic opposition is mounting to President Trump's potential nominee. But he now supports reaching an agreement with the United States and Canada, though talks have been stalled over Trump administration demands for higher USA content and a "sunset clause" in the 1994 trade agreement.

Carlos Cardenas, head of Latin America country risk calls it "unlikely" that Lopez Obrador would "conduct a wave of expropriations/nationalisations across all economic sectors".

"Lopez Obrador said he would "seek to establish an authentic democracy and we do not intend to establish a dictatorship". Lopez Obrador, who founded the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA), follows in the populist tradition, and vowed to fight fire with fire when it comes to Trump.

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However, the Sheriff's Office stated that the investigation is continuing as detectives "are seeking additional suspects". Williams went before the judge on Thursday afternoon local time where he was held without bond "due to probable cause".

He contrasted the US immigration laws with "Mexico's very strong immigration laws".