Daily Management Review

Trump Announces Tariffs On Mexico Over Illegal Immigration Issue


Trump Announces Tariffs On Mexico Over Illegal Immigration Issue
All goods imported into the United States from Mexico would face tariffs if the southern neighbor of the US doe not curb illegal immigration into the US, announced US President Donald Trump.

A 5% tariff would be imposed on Mexican goods entering the US starting June 10 and would slowly rise "until the illegal immigration problem is remedied", trump said in a tweet.
The proposed tariffs would be "disastrous", said Jesús Seade, Mexico's top diplomat for North America.

A national emergency was declared by Trump in February at the US-Mexico border. Trump justified this move by saying that it was a necessary measure to curb what he claimed was a crisis at the US southern border.

They are overwhelmed, say border agents. Critics however claimed that the border agencies are mishandling and mistreating migrants.

A group of more than 1,000 migrants were detained on Wednesday, said US border authorities in El Paso, Texas, on Thursday. That was the single largest group that had been encountered by agents so far.

The apprehension "demonstrates the severity of the border security and humanitarian crisis at our south-west border", said Robert Perez, customs and border protection deputy commissioner.

Since long, Trump has been accusing Mexico of not taking enough steps to clamp down on illegal flow of people into the US and this announcement of Trump is his latest attempt to put pressure on Mexico to take action.

If the tariffs were really imposed, Mexico "must respond vigorously", Seade said.

He did not want "confrontation", said Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador in response. "I propose deepening our dialogue, to look for other alternatives to the migration problem," he wrote in a letter on Thursday.

President Trump has sought funds to build a wall on the US-Mexico border during his election campaign and throughout his time in office. The aim of declaring the national emergency at the border was to divert federal funds which could be used to erect as border wall with Mexico. His efforts were however blocked by a US judge in May.

For implementation of the new tariffs on Mexico, the International Emergency Economic Powers Act would be used by Trump, the White House said on Thursday. Ironically, on the same day that Trump announced the tariffs,  the White House informed the Congress of its plans for pushing for a new trade deal with Mexico and Canada.

There would be an increase of five percentage points each month in the tariffs till October 1 – when it would reach 25 per cent, Trump said in a White House statement. He said that the tariffs would stay at that level "unless and until Mexico substantially stops the illegal inflow of aliens coming through its territory".

"For years, Mexico has not treated us fairly - but we are now asserting our rights as a sovereign nation," the statement said.

According to analysts, this latest tariff announcement on Mexico by Trump was driven by political causes but it would have a significant financial and economic impacts.

(Adapted from BBC.com)