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Mexico ready to retaliate by hurting American corn farmers

February 13, 2017. Summarized by summa-bot.

Mexican Senator Armando Rios Piter told CNN that he plans to introduce a bill this week that would stop Mexican purchases of American corn.

Mexico is one of the top buyers of American corn in the world today.

And Mexican senator Armando Rios Piter, who leads a congressional committee on foreign relations, says he will introduce a bill this week where Mexico will buy corn from Brazil and Argentina instead of the United States.

"I'm going to send a bill for the corn that we are buying in the Midwest and. . . change to Brazil or Argentina," Rios Piter, 43, told told CNN's Leyla Santiago on Sunday at an anti-Trump protest in Mexico City.

American corn shipments to Mexico have catapulted since NAFTA, a free trade deal signed between Mexico, America and Canada.

American farmers sent $2. 4 billion of corn to Mexico in 2015, the most recent year of available data.

In 1995, the year after NAFTA became law, corn exports to Mexico were a mere $391 million.

"If we do indeed see a trade war where Mexico starts buying from Brazil. . . we're going to see it affect the corn market and ripple out to the rest of the ag economy," says Darin Newsom, senior analyst at DTN, an agricultural management firm.

Rios Piter's bill is another sign of Mexico's willingness to respond to Trump's threats.

Trump wants to make Mexico pay for a wall on the border, and he's threatened taxes on Mexican imports ranging from 20% to 35%.

Mexico's economy minister, Ildefonso Guajardo, said in January Mexico would respond "immediately" to any tariffs from Trump.

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