- Canadian Trade Minister Mary Ng reiterated Canada's ongoing concern with the investment climate in Mexico specifically in energy and mining sectors
MEXICO CITY/WASHINGTON: Trade ministers from the United States and Canada expressed concern about Mexico's energy policies on Wednesday, as they met with their Mexican counterpart to mark the one-year anniversary of a regional trade pact.
US Trade Representative (USTR) Katherine Tai told reporters during a joint news conference that the United States is following Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's approach to the oil and power sectors and seemed to suggest underlying differences.
"With respect to the energy policies that we see being discussed and envisioned by the Lopez Obrador administration, we are watching very closely... we are raising our concerns; we are here to engage," said Tai, without citing specific issues.
Her answer came in response to a question about the Mexican government's decision late last week to choose state-owned Pemex to run a major shared oil find instead of a private consortium led by US oil company Talos Energy, which made the discovery in 2017.
Canadian Trade Minister Mary Ng reiterated Canada's "ongoing concern with the investment climate in Mexico specifically in energy and mining sectors," but also welcomed the expected reopening of the San Rafael mine operated by Canadian miner America's Gold and Silver Corp.
The mine in northern Mexico will reopen following an extended labor dispute.
Tai and Ng met in Mexico City with Mexican Economy Minister Tatiana Clouthier at the one-year anniversary of the entry into force of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.
In a statement USTR said Tai also held a meeting with Mexico's Agriculture Minister Victor Villalobos, along with Clouthier, where she emphasized the importance of Mexico immediately resuming authorization of biotech products, like genetically modified grains.
The USTR chief also inquired about expanding access for US fresh potatoes in Mexico and protecting an endangered porpoise, illegal fishing in the Gulf of Mexico and sea turtle bycatch.