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Mexico hopes Chinese automotive investments continue to flow

(Xinhua)    10:08, October 04, 2017

MEXICO CITY, Oct. 3 (Xinhua) -- Chinese investments in the Mexican automotive industry will hopefully continue to flow to North America's attractive market, said a top industry executive on Tuesday.

"We would hope this trend continues," Arturo Rangel, vice-chairman of Canacintra, the national chamber of the transformation industry.

Speaking at the Automotive Leaders Summit in Mexico City, Rangel said that North America imports about 30 billion U.S. dollars of auto parts from China, more than 21 billion dollars from Japanand 14 billion dollars from Germany.

"We hope this production, which is currently being imported, could be generated in the region, so we hope for more investments (from China)," indicated Rangel.

"All the regions are seeking to invest in Mexico, not because it is attractive to enter the North American market, but because of our general network of commercial treaties, which makes us a very important distribution platform for the world," he noted.

Concerning the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiations and their impact on potential investors, Rangel said that the automotive industry is waiting for the U.S. proposal on increasing rules of origin in the sector.

"The position of the industry is to keep the rule as it is, changing the rules of origin will only harm competitiveness," said Rangel.

The U.S. Trade Representative, Robert Lighthizer, has indicated that Washington wants stricter norms concerning the rules of origin for vehicles, which specify the percentage of auto parts that must be built within NAFTA countries.

Currently, in order to benefit from free trade between Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, automakers in the region must ensure vehicles contain 62.5 percent of parts made in NAFTA countries.

"We are waiting that the parties make a proposal," said Rangel.

The fourth round of NAFTA talks will be held between Oct. 11-15 in Washington D.C.

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