Enrique Pena Nieto has agreed to meet with President-elect Trump, hailing "a new phase in relations" with the US. The government has said deportations may rise when Trump takes office, but doesn't expect them soon.
Shortly after the US elected Donald Trump to be its next president, Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto spoke with Trump to congratulate him
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto called President-elect Donald Trump on Wednesday to congratulate the new Republican leader whose campaign targeted Mexican citizens and threatened the country's economy.
Pena Nieto described the call as "cordial, friendly and respectful" during a press conference at his official residence. He also said the two agreed to meet during the transition period prior to Trump's January 20 inauguration.
"I am optimistic. It's clear that a new phase in relations opens with the arrival of a new government, but I also think that there is a great opportunity" for the development of both countries, the Mexican leader said.
Deportations expected to wait
Throughout his campaign, Trump has vowed to deport millions of undocumented Mexican immigrants as well as to build a border wall and make Mexico pay for it. He also threatened to freeze billions in remittances that immigrants send back to their families across the border in order to pay for the wall.
Mexico's Deputy Interior Minister said although deportations may rise when Trump takes office, he does not expect the process to begin soon.
"It may well be that deportations of the estimated 6 million undocumented Mexicans increase but we don't think it will be a measure that will take place soon or happen quickly," Humberto
Roque Villanueva told Reuters news agency in an interview.
Pena Nieto met with Trump back in August during a controversial visit which angered Mexican citizens. Early on in his campaign, Trump called Mexican immigrants "rapists" and "drug dealers."
During that meeting, the Mexican president said his country would never pay for the border wall.
Mexican market hit by Trump win
Following Trump's shocking electoral win, Mexico's currency fell 7.18 percent to 20.20 pesos per dollar, while the Mexican stock market tumbled 2.2 percent.
Treasury Secretary Jose Antonio Meade tried to reassure citizens made nervous by the currency tumble on Wednesday, saying no immediate actions were planned and that Mexico's financial position is strong despite the peso drop.
The US is Mexico's largest trading partner and Trump has said he intends to re-negotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which is the base of the two countries' economic relationship.
Early on Wednesday morning, Trump beat Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in the contentious race for the White House in a win which defied poll predictions and sent the world into uncertainty.
rs/bw (AP, AFP, dpa, Reuters)