The pep talk made for yet another surreal development in the aftermath of Trump’s inauguration: Mexico’s richest man turned national cheerleader in chief. Slim, who amassed his Forbes-list-worthy fortune on the back of his country’s weak anti-trust laws, wasn’t just rooting for Mexico, but for its beleaguered president, Enrique Peña Nieto. “We have to back the Mexican president to defend our national interests,” he said.

He sees huge upside for Mexico if Trump achieves the kind of economic growth he has promised. Personally, he said, his businesses in the US stand to win if Trump carries out plans to cut taxes.

Slim also pointed out that Mexico is in a strong position to sit down with the new tenant in the White House, who he described as intelligent, with common sense. Trump may be harping on the US’s trade deficit with Mexico and the migration of jobs south of the border, but millions of American consumers benefit from cheaper “Made-in-Mexico” goods, he pointed out. The US also depends on Mexican labor. “Even the wall is going to have to be built by Mexicans,” he said.  ”Who else is going to do it?”

“We have to occupy ourselves, instead of lamenting ourselves,” he said.

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