Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador will meet with U.S. President Donald Trump on the afternoon of July 8 in a bilateral working meeting in Washington, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard confirmed Wednesday.
Although he promised more details in the future, the chancellor reiterated that the previous day he received the invitation from the White House for an official working visit.
This will include the expected meeting between Trump and Lopez Obrador on July 8 and a trilateral meeting on July 9 for the new trade agreement between Mexico, the United States and Canada (T-MEC), which begins this July 1.
“The essence of this visit responds to what we are witnessing today which is the entry into force of this treaty, there are certainly many issues, with the United States there will always be and also with Canada,” said Ebrard at the morning press conference at the National Palace.
The foreign minister said that López Obrador and Trump will have “conversations on various topics” next Wednesday, while the morning of the next day will be “what has to do with a trilateral agenda.
Lopez Obrador’s trip to Washington will be his first trip abroad since he became president.
The president has indicated that he intends to travel “on a commercial route,” not by private plane, and that from Mexico only Foreign Minister Ebrard, the head of the presidential office, Alfonso Romo, and Economy Secretary Graciela Márquez will accompany him.
This visit causes controversy for opponents and activists from both countries who assure that Trump could take advantage of their presence for his reelection campaign towards November.
The head of the SRE argued Wednesday that Lopez Obrador’s trip is necessary to send a signal to investors for the entry into force of the T-MEC.
“It’s a visit for what? First, because we have to emphasize to everyone, investors, financial institutions, but also to the international arena in general, that there is a commitment in North America to strengthen trade,” he said.
The official celebrated as a diplomatic triumph the start of the T-MEC, which two years ago was “thought to be impossible”.
He highlighted the improvement of competitive wages, the guarantee of labor rights, dispute resolution panels and certainty, which in “Mexico’s vision is a major achievement.
“Today not only a treaty comes into force, with all the contents I said, but we start a very relevant presence of Mexico for investment, employment and economic growth, that is the objective, that is what the president is going for,” concluded Ebrard.