BERLIN/CIUDAD DE MÉXICO/BUENOS AIRES
(Own report) - On her trip to Argentina and Mexico last week, Chancellor Angela Merkel sought to use the tensions between US President Donald Trump and Latin America to strengthen German influence on the subcontinent, by expanding business relations. Berlin would like to knit closer ties to Argentina through a free trade agreement with the South American Mercosur alliance and is planning to expand bi-lateral trade with Mexico, on the basis of the existing free trade agreement. Already long before Trump's electoral victory, the German government had been seeking to strengthen its trade with Latin America. Trump's threats to fortify the Mexican border with a wall and the revocation of the NAFTA free trade agreement have practically driven the countries of this region into Berlin's arms. This was even reinforced, when Chancellor Merkel publicly criticized the wall project. The coup had the desired effect, despite the fact that the EU - under German pressure - is surrounding itself with wall-like border fortifications. The German effort to expand its Latin American influence is also directed at China.