Mexican, US legislators meet on NAFTA, security, trade

"The two sides have come together in quite meaningful ways", Mr. Ross added.

Ross said he would extend the deadline by 24 hours, until the end of day Tuesday, June 6, "to allow the two sides to complete final technical consultations". "We are quite optimistic that our two nations are on the precipice of an agreement we can all support, and so have decided that a short extension of the deadline is in everyone's best interest".

The Mexican official and a US industry source said the USA sugar industry then came back with additional demands outside of the terms agreed on earlier.

Those demands are "impossible" to meet and the strategy seems to be a "moving target from petitioners to blow the deal", the source said, adding that the demands included conditions on the right of first refusal that would be hard to meet.

ASR Group declined to comment on its involvement in the talks. The subsequent surge in Mexican sugar exports prompted US industry complaints.

Under NAFTA, Mexico has the right to export unlimited amounts of sugar to the US, but exporting subsidized sugar or dumping it in the USA violates other US trade laws.

Some Mexican customers of U.S.ag commodities have already indicated they're nervous about a redo of NAFTA.

One source said the sugar deal would benefit both the United States and Mexico, with another saying Mexico will agree to export less refined sugar and send a lower quality of crude sugar to the United States than it previously did.

The U.S. and Mexico need to reach agreement today on the sugar dispute between them, or the U.S.is scheduled to impose punitive tariffs on Mexican sugar over Mexico's export of subsidized sugar at dumped prices to the U.S.

U.S. sugar companies and farmers have long accused Mexico of flooding the USA market with subsidized sugar sold at below-market prices, and both governments agreed to Mexican sugar export quotas in 2014.

  • Zachary Reyes