Report Says Trump's Wall Will Cost 21 Billion, Take 3 Years

Alicia WestFeb 13, 2017

The wall along the southern USA border - really a set of fences and walls - would take 3 ½ years to build and would cost $21.6 billion, according to an internal report by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that was seen by Reuters.

The report is expected to be given to the secretary of DHS within a few days, although the Trump administration might not accept its recommendation, Reuters noted.

That's according to an internal report, seen by Reuters, which analyses the likely cost of the new President's planned perimeter, which the authors suggest will probably be a mish-mash of fences and walls rather than one continuous design.

The Department of Homeland Security said this past week that the wall would cost $21.6 billion and take three and a half years to construct.

US-Mexican relations have plunged since Trump's pronouncements on the border wall, prompting Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto to cancel a scheduled meeting with the new US leader.

On January 25, Trump issued an executive order aimed at speeding up the construction of the wall along the US-Mexico border, delivering on his signature campaign pledge. However, Mexico has adamantly rejected the notion that they would fund the border wall.

The report said the first phase would be the smallest, targeting sections covering 26 miles (42 km) near San Diego, California; El Paso, Texas; and in Texas's Rio Grande Valley.

Mr. Trump said the price of the wall, which would be built along the almost 2,000 mile border, would drop way down once he became involved in the project.

During his presidential campaign, the USA leader suggested it would cost $12 billion (£9.6 billion).

The report also revealed that the government is already working with contractors for the project, and is seeking environmental waivers, Reuters reports.

Of the 2,000 mile border between the USA and Mexico, 654 miles are already "fortified", and the plan maps out a three-phase construction process to seal the remaining 1,346 miles, which it estimates will take 3.5 years to complete.

In remarks to law enforcement officials in Washington on Wednesday, Trump reported that the wall was being designed "right now". However, one thing is certain - Trump's wall will take plenty of time and money to create, and it might not be finished by the time 2020 rolls around.

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