Saturday, January 28, 2017

FT Latam Viva for January 27, 2017

11:42 AM (17 hours ago)
to me
Trump vs Mexico: the gloves come off
By Joe Leahy 
January 27, 2017
Remember the media speculation about how US President Donald Trump would moderate his seemingly outrageous campaign promises? That was, as he would say, “fake news”.
Mexico is discovering to its horror that Trump is a man of his word - and a man of action, for better or for worse. In his first days in office, he signed off his plans to build a wall along part of the 3145-kilometre border between the US and Mexico. Even more outrageously from the Mexican point of view, he is fulfilling his campaign promise to force his smaller and poorer southern neighbor to pay for it. Proposals include a 20 per cent import tax on imports from Mexico.
Mexican president Enrique Penã Neto cancelled a planned meeting with Mr Trump at the White House and Vincente Fox, the former president of Mexico, put the US president straight by tweeting: “Mexico is not going to pay for that f*****g wall.”
Mr Trump also cancelled the Trans-Pacific Partnership that would have united the US, Mexico, Peru and Chile with countries in Asia and Oceania in a free trade agreement. While Mexico tried to keep the spirit of the deal alive by beginning negotiations with other member countries excluding the US, the rest of the continent was keeping its head down rather than risk catching the notice of the rampaging Trump administration.
In Brazil, there were some other distractions. After a long Christmas and New Year break, the Petrobras investigation roared back to life with federal police seeking the arrest of Eike Batista, formerly Brazil’s richest man, on accusations of corruption. Police drove into the former oil and logistics magnate’s mansion in Rio de Janeiro in the wee hours of Thursday morning only to find he was not home. He apparently left earlier in the week for New York. He is now considered a fugitive from justice, although his lawyers say he plans to return home soon and give himself in to police.
Quote of the week
“Simply put, any policy proposal which drives up costs of Corona, tequila, or margaritas is a big-time bad idea. Mucho Sad” – Tweet from Lindsey Graham, a Republican senator and frequent critic of Mr Trump
Chart of the week
The week in review
FTfm: Mexican stand-off looms between Fed and White House
Janet Yellen wants restraint and the Trump team wants stimulus, writes John Dizard
Fast FT: Trump, Peña Nieto speak on telephone a day after summit plans collapse
Trump’s campaign rhetoric raises stakes in Mexico
Diplomatic collision course puts investors’ nerves put to the test
Carlos Slim calls press conference following Trump Mexico tweets
Eike Batista sought in Brazil corruption probe
Sweeping Petrobras investigation targets highest-profile business figure yet
Brazil prison riots serve to highlight a broken system
Unrest and ‘Lava Jato’ corruption case underline inequality and iniquity in jails
White House weighs 20% import tax to fund US-Mexico border wall
Peña Nieto cancels Washington summit in first diplomatic row for new administration
Gillian Tett: Donald Trump’s campaign shifted odds by making big data personal
Social media surveys helped to target thousands of individuals in swing states
Mexican president scraps Trump meeting over border wall dispute
Enrique Peña Nieto insists his country will not pay for US leader’s project
Fast FT: Mexico's president says it will not pay for Trump's wall
Trump begins to put anti-immigration promises into action
President raises concern among allies as he expresses openness to waterboarding
Mexico braced for confrontation with Trump team
Enrique Peña Nieto vows to stand up to Nafta pressure from new US president
FT LatAm Viva features commentary by the FT's Latin America team and stories from across the FT.
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