United States President Donald Trump on Thursday (10 January) claimed that while he repeatedly stressed during his election campaign that Mexico would pay for his proposed border wall on nation’s southern border, he never meant that the Latin American country would “write a cheque”, ABC News has reported.
Trump was addressing the media before heading to McAllen, Texas, to highlight his push for a border wall amid a now 20-day government shutdown.
Trump was quoted in the report as saying “When -- during the campaign, I would say, "Mexico is going to pay for it," obviously, I never said this and I never meant they're going to write out a cheque. I said, "They're going to pay for it." They are."
He added that Mexico would pay for the wall through the newly-revised North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) trade deal, now known as the United States-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) agreement, still unapproved by US Congress.
“They are paying for it with the incredible deal we made, called the United States, Mexico, and Canada USMCA deal. It's a trade deal. It has to be approved by Congress. It probably will be, other than maybe they even hold that up because they want to have -- you know, they want to do as much harm as they can, only because of the 2020 presidential election," he said.