PHOENIX -- Mexico's president-elect, Enrique Peña Nieto, will be in Washington, D.C. to meet with President Barack Obama and key members of his administration on Tuesday. The meetings are scheduled just days before Peña Nieto is sworn into office on Dec 1.
In a recent Washington Post op-ed, Peña Nieto wrote he wants to discus with President Obama how to "rearrange our common priorities." He wrote, "it is a mistake to limit our bilateral relationship to drugs and security concerns," and that the most important issue may be bolstering trade between the two countries.
Chris Wilson of the Woodrow Wilson Center's Mexico Institute says there are reasons why economic issues should become a priority in this latest phase of the U.S.-Mexico relationship.
"There is a lot of strong growth prospects in Mexico," Wilson said. "There is a strong growing middle class in Mexico, that makes Mexico a strong market for U.S. goods, and extremely importantly, Mexico is our partner in manufacturing."
The exact agenda of the Tuesday afternoon meeting at the White House has not been disclosed, but will cover the economy, employment, immigration and security, among other topics, according to a press release from the Peña Nieto transition team. The same press release said the meeting will be divided into two parts, one that will include members of Peña Nieto's transition team and Obama administration officials, including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Homeland Security adviser John Brennan, as well as a private meeting between Obama and Peña Nieto.
Pena Nieto represents the return of the PRI party, which ran Mexico for more than 70 years up until 2000.