Mexican finance minister likely to talk with Yellen next week

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MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexican Finance Minister Arturo Herrera is likely to speak to his U.S. counterpart, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, on Tuesday to discuss trade, migration and fiscal policy, as well as touching on matters relating to monetary policy, Mexico’s deputy finance minister said on Friday.

The talk will be the first between the top finance officials of the two North American trading partners since President Joe Biden took office and Yellen was confirmed in her new job as head of the U.S. Treasury Department.

Speaking to reporters, Mexican Deputy Finance Minister Gabriel Yorio also said he believed the government’s 4.6% gross domestic product growth target in 2021 looked “feasible,” noting that the pace of recovery would depend in part on the speed of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.

Mexico suffered its worst recession since the 1930s last year, with GDP tumbling 8.5% in seasonally adjusted terms, according to a preliminary estimate published by the national statistics agency on Friday.

Mexico’s finance ministry said the goal is to vaccinate 90% of the country’s 126 million people by the first quarter of 2022.

Yorio added that the government was not currently planning any reform that would increase the tax burden on the economy.

He also said the peso’s recovery against the dollar by the end of 2020 suggested that any central bank surplus, which the Bank of Mexico can accrue on its dollar reserves when the peso depreciates, was likely to be slight.

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