President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said at a Mexico City news conference that "there is willingness on the part of us government officials to establish dialogue and reach agreement and compromises".
Donald Trump pressured Mexico to stop people from crossing into the United States, one day after threatening to impose new tariffs on Mexican imports in a bid to get the country to crack down on illegal immigration. -Mexican border, battering Mexican financial assets and denting global stocks.
"There is a willingness on the part of US officials to establish a dialogue and reach agreements", Lopez Obrador told reporters at a press conference in Veracruz, a major port city on the Gulf of Mexico.
"The main thing is to inform about what we're already doing on the migration issue, and if it's necessary to reinforce these measures without violating human rights, we could be prepared to reach that deal", Lopez Obrador said.
Since taking office in December, Mexico's Lopez Obrador has urged Trump to help him tackle migration by promoting economic development in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, the poor Central American countries where most of the migrants apprehended on the USA border come from.
The ultimatum from Trump is the biggest foreign policy test to date for Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and a tall order for Mexican security forces struggling not only to combat migrant flows but also to fight a record level of gang violence and homicide.
Mexico's economy relies heavily on exports to the United States and shrank in the first quarter.
Trump's surprise announcement Thursday of new tariffs against a key U.S. trading partner was widely criticized, including by USA business groups, border-state politicians and some Republican lawmakers. He did not provide details of the plan.
"It is in everyone's interest to reach an agreement", he said. Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney told reporters Thursday that the proposed tariffs were to resolve the administration's perceived border crisis and not trade-related.
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On Friday, Mexico's top farm lobby said Lopez Obrador should target agricultural goods from states that support Trump's Republican Party if the American leader carries out his threat to punish Mexico for the migrants heading north.
US border agents have apprehended an increasing number of people, largely from Central America, who crossed the southern USA border without authorization in recent months.
Those statistics are likely to figure in the Mexican government's argument that it is addressing the problem.
In power since December, the leftist Lopez Obrador has tried to deflect Trump's barbs, insisting that the best way to tackle migrant flows is by jointly fostering development in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, where most of the migrants apprehended on the US border come from. Numerous people who had once talked Trump out of going through with his most radical ideas, such as completely shutting down the southern border or renewing the controversial immigrant child separation policy, have been pushed out of the administration, including former Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.
Trump vowed frequently during his 2016 election campaign to make Mexico pay for construction of a wall on the U.S.
In April, Trump took a step back from an earlier threat to completely close the USA border with Mexico to fight illegal immigration, under pressure from companies anxious it would cause chaos for businesses. It's not saying, if immigration and apprehensions go down by 5 percent, then we will be able to rethink these tariffs.
He did not answer the question, but pressure has grown steadily on his government to give ground on the issue.
But doubts are growing in Mexico about whether Lopez Obrador has taken the wrong tack by downplaying US provocations.