Big oil calls proposed NAFTA agreement with Mexico encouraging

Big oil calls proposed NAFTA agreement with Mexico encouraging
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One of the leading oil lobbyists said it is "encouraged" by news that the Trump administration has reached an agreement with Mexico to update the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

The American Petroleum Institute (API) said Monday that the industry relies on open trade and modernized relationship with Mexico.

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"We are encouraged that negotiators have reached a preliminary agreement to modernize our trade relationships,” said API President and CEO Mike Sommers in a statement. “America’s natural gas and oil industry depends on trade to continue to grow U.S. jobs and our economy, and deliver for consumers.”

Mexico in 2017 was the leading importer of American oil and petroleum products, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

President Trump said Monday the U.S. has reached an agreement with Mexico amid contentious talks on revamping NAFTA

"It’s a big day for trade. It’s a big day for our country," the president told reporters in the Oval Office, who were summoned to watch Trump speak by phone with outgoing Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.

The president said he plans to "terminate" the existing NAFTA agreement, which currently includes Canada. 

If Canada is excluded in the new deal, it would mark a major shift in U.S. trade policy.

While the negotiations have largely focused on crafting a deal on auto trade, bilateral talks between the U.S. and Mexico have been bogged down by a split opinion between Mexican administrations over energy policy — some who have long been skeptical of foreign oil companies entering the Mexican oil industry.