Possible new Mexico tariffs called "problematic" by Tennessee trade group

Jun 6, 2019

Credit tnmfg.org

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE) -- Tennessee companies will be watching closely as trade talks between the U.S. and Mexico continue Thursday in Washington.

The meeting was hastily called following last week’s threat by President Donald Trump to impose new tariffs on Mexico. The president wants Mexico to immediately curtail the number of immigrants arriving at the U.S. southern border.

Bradley Jackson leads the Tennessee Manufacturers Association. He notes that it takes time and money to bring a new product to market and uncertainty puts that investment at risk.

“Anytime there’s instability around exports and trade policy it can create major problems for manufacturers. They want certainty  and right now there’s a lot of uncertainty around.”

Jackson says imposing tariffs on Mexico would be problematic for Tennessee companies. He says a lot of the raw materials used to build new products cross the southern border.

The Association says Tennessee is one of the top ten manufacturing states in the nation and the manufacturing sector employees roughly 300,000 Tennesseans.

Border officials say they apprehended some 132,000 migrants crossing the nation's southern border in May. That represents the largest surge in illegal crossings since 2006.