NAFTA Trade

NAFTA Trade

When the U.S., Canada and Mexico implemented the North American Free Trade Agreement in 1994, it opened the door for open trade by ending tariffs on various goods and services and creating an even playing field for the three markets. Today, agricultural goods such as eggs, corn and meats; manufactured products such as auto parts; and raw materials such as steel and lumber flow freely across the borders, primarily by truck and rail.

The U.S. exported more than $280 billion in goods to Canada in 2011, making its northern neighbor the largest source for outgoing products.  U.S. imports, at more than $315 billion, make Canada the second-largest source of inbound goods after China.

Exports to and imports from Mexico set record highs in 2011, with exports reaching $198.4 billion and imports hitting $262.9 billion.

The combined $1.1 trillion in combined trade among the three partners make NAFTA the second-largest trade bloc in the world, second only to the 27-member European Union.

Special Coverage

WASHINGTON — A key report from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration this fall will go a long way toward determining how committed politicians and business leaders are to taking the North American Free Trade Agreement to the next level.

News & Analysis

16 Oct 2014
Truck capacity is tightening along the U.S.-Mexican border, forcing cross-border shippers to become more innovative, says Sonney Jones, a former shipper and now director of sales in Mexico for Transplace.
06 Oct 2014
A new survey of U.S. shippers suggests poor U.S.
A busy warehousing operation in Mexico
26 Sep 2014
Ryder System is expanding its inland distribution network in Mexico, starting with a transloading center for Chrysler at the Gulf Coast Port of Altamira.
Vehicles in ro-ro carrier
31 Aug 2014
North American vehicle production is on the rise amid strong demand for vehicles in the NAFTA countries and foreign markets.
Made in Canada
27 Aug 2014
Canadian export growth is slated to rise to 4.7 percent this year and 7.7 percent in 2015, as global and particularly U.S. demand builds, non-energy shipments rise, and the Canadian dollar weakens, according to the Royal Bank of Canada.
BNSF and Ferromex locomotives
20 May 2014
U.S. and Mexican shippers later this month will gain better access to manufacturing growth in central Mexico through a joint service operated by BNSF Railway and Ferromex, the latest railroad partnership forged to tap growing cross-border trade.

Commentary

As the growth in the number of exports from Mexico to the U.S. shows no signs of slowing down, the challenges that come as a result of the trade imbalance will not go away. This cycle is not healthy for the transportation industry, and we need to find ways to encourage capacity into the market.