July 9, 2018 / 4:22 PM / 2 months ago

UPDATE 1-Mexico auto exports, output rises in June as autos lobby seeks NAFTA impetus

(Adds details from report, background on NAFTA talks)

By Anthony Esposito

MEXICO CITY, July 9 (Reuters) - Mexico auto exports, excluding those from manufacturer Nissan, rose 8.1 percent in June compared with the same month a year ago, while production for the month rose 0.8 percent, the country’s auto industry association AMIA said on Monday.

Mexico exported 260,966 units in June, up from 241,501 in the same month a year earlier, AMIA said, and produced 349,153 units last month, up from 346,522 in June 2017.

AMIA’s export data did not include figures for Japanese carmaker Nissan Motor Co Ltd, which has stopped providing export figures.

Domestic auto sales, however, dipped 6 percent to 119,713 vehicles in June, compared with June 2017, AMIA said.

Mexico’s auto industry has been plagued by uncertainty since U.S. President Donald Trump last year launched a renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, known as NAFTA, seeking to repatriate manufacturing jobs to the United States.

The Trump administration aims to secure a bigger share of auto production for the United States under a revised NAFTA pact by insisting on tougher regional content requirements.

Earlier on Monday, Canadian, Mexican and U.S. auto trade associations urged a “renewed focus” in talks to reshape NAFTA.

The trade groups said all parties should return to the negotiating table for a “cohesive three-country” deal, particularly now that Mexico’s presidential elections are concluded.

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was the landslide winner of the July 1 vote, and the leftist president-elect is due to take office on Dec. 1.

Last week, a top aide told Reuters that Lopez Obrador’s victory will jumpstart NAFTA talks, adding that an agreement is possible before the next government takes office. (Reporting by Anthony Esposito; editing by Gabriel Stargardter and G Crosse)

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