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What would happen to people and trade if Trump closes border

Mexico is the United States' third-largest trading partner after Canada and China, so the impact of a border closing would be widespread and immediate. And the anticipated avocado shortages would just be one part of it. Who could come off worse? "It is a bit like a murder-suicide," says Andrew Selee, the president of the Migration Policy Institute, a think tank that describes itself as non-partisan. "You can hold a gun to the Mexican government, but it ricochets right back on to the US economy."
Mexico's Foreign Minister, Marcelo Ebrard, tweeted on Friday that the country will "not act on the basis of threats". The Mexican President, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, has also urged prudence. "We are not going get confrontational with the government of the United States," he said.



What will the impact be? Many Mexicans and US citizens live and work across the two countries. Many are enrolled in programs - such as the Trusted Traveler Program - that allow them to fast-track immigration lines.
"It would throw a huge monkey wrench into people's lives if this were suddenly stopped," says Mr Selee, who is also the author of a book called Vanishing Frontiers, about the countries' deep links.
What about the avocados? The kneejerk reaction from average US consumers has been to worry about potential avocado shortages, seeing as Mexico is one of the fruit's leading producers. One executive told Reuters news agency that Americans would run out of avocados in three weeks if imports from Mexico were stopped.


Mexico also exports tomatoes, cucumbers, blackberries and raspberries to the US. "We're absolutely going to see higher prices," said Monica Ganley from Quarterra, a consultancy specializing in Latin American agricultural issues and trade. "This is a very real and very relevant concern for American consumers."



Closing the entirety of the southern US border for any significant stretch of time would be a task of absurd complexity, with devastating economic consequences for states like Texas and California.
What's more, it would do nothing to stop the flow of refugee-seekers, who claim asylum once they cross the Rio Grande and before they reach any border wall.


Trump is making these threats to emphasize a point, leaving aides to figure out the details. It is, without a doubt, a different kind of diplomacy from a different kind of president. The jury is still out on whether he can succeed.


This post is compiled with excerpts from Vicky Baker's report here...