Officials from Mexico and Texas urge state to defend NAFTA

Texas, Mexico account for nearly $2 billion in annual trade

By WILL WEISSERT, Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Officials from Mexico and Texas are urging the state's lawmakers to defend the North American Free Trade Agreement against Donald Trump's administration, which has been wary of it.

Texas Secretary of State Rolando Pablos and Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez, Mexico's consul general in Austin, told the lawmakers on Monday that the state benefited from NAFTA more than any other.

Pablos says his state and Mexico account for nearly $2 billion in annual trade and "have a shared destiny."

Gutierrez says NAFTA has increased trade between both nations six-fold to $584 billion. He added: "Texas must be its No. 1 champion."

Some lawmakers expressed concerns about NAFTA and the potential "economic catastrophe" of a GOP plan slapping a 20 percent tax on all imported goods.

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