Mexico seeks to convince U.S. to invest in Central America, not just migration curbs

·1-min read
Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador delivers a speech on the third anniversary of his presidential election victory at National Palace in Mexico City

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - The United States needs to invest in development, not just migration restrictions, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Thursday following a U.S. Supreme Court decision to reinstate a hardline immigration policy.

The cause of illegal migration must be addressed and Mexico seeks to convince the United States to invest in Central American development, Lopez Obrador said in response to a question about the U.S. Supreme Court decision.

"In this way, people have options, can work, can be happy where they were born, where their relatives are, their cultures... and we are also proposing in the United States that they start a program of temporary work visas," he said at a regular news conference, adding that Mexico will always seek to have a good relationship with the United States.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday denied President Joe Biden's bid to rescind an immigration policy implemented by his predecessor, Donald Trump, that forced thousands of asylum seekers to stay in Mexico awaiting U.S. hearings.

In response to the ruling, Mexico's foreign ministry said on Wednesday that Mexico will exercise sovereignty in designing and executing its migration policies.

The United States and Canada require a larger workforce to grow their manufacturing capacity and reduce the reliance on Asian imports, and migrants should be considered for the jobs, Lopez Obrador said.

"Why buy goods in Asia if they can be produced in North America and throughout America?" he said. "If we carry out a policy where we do not reject migrants left and right... they have alternatives."

(Reporting by Cassandra Garrison; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel and Dan Grebler)

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