Trump Denies Increased Border Wall Cost, Promises 'Price Will Come Way Down'

Reuters on Thursday published details of an internal report by the Department of Homeland Security that estimated the price of a wall along the entire border at $21.6 billion.

According to Reuters, the report has not yet been presented to DHS Secretary John Kelly.

Since his surprise victory in the November 8 elections, the former real-estate mogul has secured commitments from Lockheed Martin and Boeing to lower the cost of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter programme and Air Force One programme, respectively.

A spokeswoman from the Department of Homeland Security said the department does "not comment on or confirm the potential existence of pre-decisional, deliberative documents".

However, a White House official disputed the Mexican officials" version of events, telling CBS News, "This is not an accurate account of their meeting and they did not "rewrite' portions of the speech".

The report sets out what it would take to close the border with 1,250 miles of fences by the end of 2020 during three construction phases. This first phase is expected to be the least expensive to construct and is expected to cost around $360 million. With 654 miles (1,046 kilometers) of the border already fortified, the new construction would extend nearly the length of the entire border.

CITY-Influential Mexicans are pushing an aggressive and perhaps risky strategy to fight a likely increase in deportations of their undocumented compatriots in the USA: jam US immigration courts in hopes of causing the already overburdened system to break down.

Some 650 miles of fencing already in place has come at an expense of $7bn and Mr Trump's plans require extending the barrier into increasingly remote and mountainous regions, which raises the building costs significantly.

Currently, 654 miles of the US southern border are already fortified.

The report also assumes that construction of the wall would commence by September 2017.

In addition to seeking eminent domain and environmental waivers, the U.S. government would also have to meet the requirements of the International Boundary and Water Commission, a U.S. -Mexico pact over shared waters. An MIT Technology Review report, on the other hand, placed the border wall's price tag at a much higher $27 to $40 billion.

U.S. President Donald Trump signed two executive orders last month that ordered the construction of a wall along the US-Mexico border and he insisted Mexico would pay for the project.