The Trump administration has accepted the credentials of Geronimo Gutierrez Fernandez as Mexico’s new ambassador to the United States. Gutierrez is expected to represent Mexico’s interests aggressively in the current renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). However, Gutiérrez must still receive approval from Mexico’s senate before he can occupy the country’s most important ambassadorial slot.
Gutierrez is known to be a supporter of the National Action Party (PAN). PAN was successful in gaining the presidency when Vicente Fox Quesada, one of President Trump’s sharpest critics, was elected in 2000. Gutierrez was Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs for North America during the Fox government. He is now the managing director of the Development Bank for North America (NADB), and is a close friend of the Foreign Minister, Luis Videgaray. If approved by the Mexican Senate, Gutierrez would replace Ambassador Carlos Sada, who left Washington after President Enrique Peña Nieto named him Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs for North America.
Having worked at the NADB, Gutierrez is expected to know NAFTA in detail. He is considered by Mexico to be the ideal representative for Mexico’s interests in what have already proven to be tense negotiations over the future of the free trade pact. Another issue on Gutierrez’ plate is immigration and border security, which in addition to NAFTA has been one of the signal issues for Trump.