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UPDATE 1-USTR Tai, Mexico's economy minister discuss energy, corn exports

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WASHINGTON, Nov 3 (Reuters) - U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai discussed differences with Mexico over its energy sector and U.S. corn exports in a virtual meeting on Thursday with Mexican Economy Minister Raquel Buenrostro, the USTR said in a statement.

Tai "underlined the importance of making expeditious progress in addressing the issues in Mexico’s energy sector," the statement said. She also emphasized "the importance of avoiding a disruption in U.S. corn exports," it said.

A decree issued in 2020 by Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador aims to phase out genetically modified corn and the herbicide glyphosate by 2024.

Mexico imports about 17 million tons of U.S. corn a year. U.S. farm lobbies contend the ban will cause billions of dollars of economic damage to both countries.

The United States and Mexico have been in talks to resolve a dispute over Mexico's energy policies. In July, Tai demanded dispute settlement talks under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal on the grounds that Lopez Obrador's policies discriminated against U.S. companies and violated the pact. (Reporting by Eric Beech; editing by Costas Pitas and Christian Schmollinger)

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