Economy and Trade

Symbiosis: Cooperation for Growth and Competitiveness

by Luis de la Calle & Christopher Wilson
A Mexican employee cleans carburetor components on the factory floor of Delphi, an American multinational auto part manufacturer


Tied together by both an accident of geographic proximity and through the deliberate integration institutionalized in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the United States and Mexico are economic allies. In 2012, bilateral goods and services trade topped a half-trillion dollars. For Mexico, trade with the U.S. is one of the country's main engines of economic growth, with 78% of Mexican exports being bought by U.S. customers. U.S. trade with Mexico represents a much smaller share of its overall economy, but Mexico is nonetheless the second largest buyer of U.S. exports. The crux of the partnership, though, lies in the way cooperation within North America supports our performance in the context of the global economy. The U.S.-Mexico economic partnership has the potential to play a key role in strengthening the competitiveness of regional exports to the rest of the world, which would accelerate the pace of the U.S. recovery and help reduce its current acco...more.


The U.S.-Mexico Network’s Imagining 2024 project is designed to provide readers a quick overview of key issues in US-Mexico relations – the background of the issue, its current state, where we ought to be by 2024, and how to get there.


Each short essay is coupled with suggested background readings for those interested in a more detailed understanding of the issue at hand.  And as an electronic publication, both the essays and their associated resource pages are updated as needed to keep the information and analysis fresh.

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