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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.

News & Analysis

The Port of Veracruz.
01 Mar 2018
Economists say the eastward drift in Mexico’s volume is partly due to the expanded Panama Canal opening, enabling ships of up to 14,000 TEU to traverse the waterway, but also due to the improved economic situation in Europe.
UPS's advanced package scanning and sortation equipment at the facility will speed the delivery of manufactured goods in both directions across the border.
06 Feb 2018
The new facility near the El Paso International Airport will serve shippers in what is called “the Borderplex” — a manufacturing region stretching out from the cities of El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.
09 Nov 2017
At the US-Mexican border, a long-term, costly imbalance in north- and southbound tractor-trailers threatens to slow cross-border supply chains.
21 Aug 2017
US and Mexican Customs officials at a KCS-built facility will work to speed growing cross-border rail traffic at Laredo.
02 Aug 2017
"National system issues" at US Customs and Border Protection alleged to cause truck backups at Canadian-US border crossings.
27 Jul 2017
Mexican trucking companies are urging lawmakers to stiffen penalties against cargo robberies.

Commentary

Automotive rules of origin are the real sticking factor.