Trump calls off proposed tariffs on Mexico, turns threats to China

Published on
June 11, 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump announced on Friday, 7 June that his administration had reached an agreement with Mexico that would result in him calling off proposed tariffs on Mexican goods.

Trump threatened on Thursday, 30 May to impose levies on all goods entering the U.S. from Mexico, beginning 10 June. The tariffs would gradually increase from 5 percent up to a ceiling of 25 percent by October if the Mexican government did not take action to curb illegal immigration into the United States, Trump said in a tweet.

The deal reached between the North American neighbors includes deployment of Mexican soldiers on its border with Guatemala, additional arrests of migrants, and the acceptance of additional asylum seekers returned from the U.S., according to the Washington Post.

“I am pleased to inform you that The United States of America has reached a signed agreement with Mexico. The Tariffs scheduled to be implemented by the U.S. on Monday, against Mexico, are hereby indefinitely suspended,” Trump tweeted. “Mexico, in turn, has agreed to take strong measures to stem the tide of Migration through Mexico, and to our Southern Border. This is being done to greatly reduce, or eliminate, Illegal Immigration coming from Mexico and into the United States. Details of the agreement will be released shortly by the State Department. Thank you!”

Over the weekend and on Monday, 10 June, Trump made several statements regarding the United States’ ongoing trade war with China, referencing his perceived success of his threats against Mexico as evidence that the tariffs he has imposed on China are working to change the two countries’ trading status.

“The China deal’s going to work out,” Trump said in an interview with CNBC. “You know why? Because of tariffs. Because right now China is getting absolutely decimated by companies that are leaving China, going to other countries, including our own, because they don’t want to pay the tariffs.”

Wen Lu, a rates strategist at TD Securities, told The New York Times that Trump’s threats toward Mexico are sending a message that trade wars are winnable and that the president would not back down.

“It’s obvious that on a long-term perspective, President Trump is willing to effectively weaponize tariffs,” Wen said. “I think he’s almost using this as a political message to reinforce his stance against China.”

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