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Rick Perry to travel to Mexico for energy talks

071117 Perry to Mexico js
Energy secretary will discuss energy cooperation and reforms with the United States' southern neighbor. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Energy Secretary Rick Perry is scheduled to travel to Mexico this week to discuss renewed energy cooperation and energy reforms in the United States' southern neighbor.

The Energy Department announced Perry's trip in a Tuesday advisory that said he would be traveling to Mexico City Thursday to meet with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Mexico's Energy Secretary Pedro Joaquin Coldwell.

President Trump said last month that he supported the recent approval of a new pipeline to deliver oil to Mexico. He quipped that the pipeline could be part of his proposed border wall. "That'll go right under the wall, right? Have it go down a little deeper in that one section," Trump said during the administration's Energy Week. Trump also has discussed placing solar panels on the border wall to generate electricity to sell to Mexico.

"During this visit, they will discuss the great strides being made in Mexican energy reform, and will highlight the long-standing energy partnership between the U.S. and Mexico," the Energy Department advisory said.

In the last year, Mexico has become increasingly dependent on imports of natural gas from the U.S. to help meet its energy and climate change goals. Crude oil exports from the U.S. to Mexico are increasing, and there are a number of new pipelines proposed to ship crude oil and natural gas to the country. Mexico has been a key supplier of oil to the U.S. while also becoming increasingly interconnected with the U.S. energy system.

"Having received the Good Neighbor Award from the U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce earlier this year, Secretary Perry and DOE remain committed to maintaining and strengthening this partnership," the Energy Department said. Perry received the award "in recognition to his leadership in fostering collaboration between the U.S. and Mexico during his tenure as governor of the State of Texas," according the the U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce.