On Wednesday, during Trump’s tariffs negotiations with Mexico in Washington D.C, Mexican importers, who usually buy 90% of their corn from the United States, booked a 35,000-ton corn cargo from Brazil, as a warning that Mexico has options.
“If we do indeed see a trade war where Mexico starts buying from Brazil…we’re going to see the corn market affected with a ripple out effect to the rest of the U.S. agriculture economy,”
says Darin Newsom, senior analyst at DTN, an agricultural management firm.
Brazilian broker and consultancy INTL FCStone confirmed that on Wednesday the cargo was going to be loaded at the northern port of Santarém and scheduled to depart on June 22, according to port line-up data.
The deal came as Mexican authorities were holding last minute talks with Washington to stave off the imposition of U.S. tariffs on Mexican goods.
On Thursday, the day before the last day of negotiations, the Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador or AMLO plays his last ACE card, by blocking the bank accounts of American corporations that were were funding the migrant Caravans.
The Mexican Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit (SHCP) in coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (SRE) and various agencies of the Government of Mexico, blocked on Thursday the bank accounts of various individuals and corporations that participate in the trafficking of migrants and the illegal organization of the migrant caravans.
The obtained information by Mexican authorities with the FIU analysis, alerted them of the trafficking of migrants, specifically caravans of migrants coming into Mexico from October 2018 to today, as well as the flow of economic resources through money transfers into Mexican territory.
From the information obtained by the FIU of the money transfers, a group of people was identified who, in the period of passage of the migrant caravans, made unusual bank transactions from Chiapas and Querétaro coming from different countries, including the United States, England, and even some other countries considered as risky jurisdictions by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
Based on the route followed by the migrant caravan, which departed on the southern border of Mexico, a series of operations and financial transfers were detected from Querétaro to six cities on the border with the United States, such as Tijuana, Nogales, Ciudad Juárez, Ciudad Acuña, Piedras Negras and Reynosa.
With this new methodology ran by the Mexican authorities, illegal payment for migrant smuggling is presumed to be utilize by U.S. and older foreign corporations funding the caravans, since it revealed the relationship that exists between the passage of migrant caravans and deposits in ATM machines, made to the previously mentioned Mexican cities, coming from El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Cameroon, United States and England.
With all the evidence collected, Mexican Authorities have instructed to add twenty-six people to the List of Blocked Persons, due to its probable link with migrant smuggling and illicit support to migrant caravans. Mexico will be sending the evidence to tje General Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic.
“With actions like this the Government of Mexico endorses its policy of frontally fighting the economic structures of human traffickers, this guarantees full respect for the human rights of all migrants considered in international legislation on the matter, taking into account their situation of vulnerability and the maximum recognition of their dignity.”
said the Mexican Financial Intelligence Unit (UIF).
The Trump Administration concluded negotiations with Mexican diplomats late Friday night. Mexico promised to expedite the newly-formed Mexican National Guard, that was meant to be deployed throughout the nation by the end of June, on Monday.
The new Mexican National Guard was approved by the Mexican congress last month and is currently in-training with a deployment date of June 30th. The guard was formed with the intention to safeguard the country’s lack of public safety and to tackle the crime rate, and it will continue to do so, but Mexico will now expedite six thousand National Guardsman to the southern region of Mexico to increase the number of guards.
As part of the agreement, the United States will be providing 5.8 billion dollar to Mexico to be used on the President’s Integrated Development Plan for Southern Mexico and Central America; a plan co-exponsored by the United Nations and several NGOs. The plan will consist in the implementation of farming programs, job-creation programs, education, internet, roads and gas pipeline infrastructure that will generate better living conditions for the people of the Central America region, so they don’t feel the need to flee their countries due to poverty and crime.
AMLO’s revolutionary plan focuses on tackling the immigration crisis from its roots, in that many studies have shown that when there is well being and a good standard of living, the crime automatically decreases.
At the end of the day, if it wasn’t for the Congressional pressure from the US, the corn scare, and the potential public disclosure of the connection between the Caravan and United States individuals, the negotiations would potentially have failed and Tariffs would have begun this Monday.
This is another score for the new Progressive President Manuel Andres Lopez Obrador, and a slap in the face to the rating agencies that we’re already hawking Mexico by downgrading it right after the Tariff threat.