U.S. Rep. McSally Hosts Meeting with Commerce Secretary Ross to Ensure S. AZ Priorities Included in NAFTA Renegotiations
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Representative Martha McSally led a bipartisan meeting with other Representatives of southern border communities and Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, to discuss the upcoming renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Alliance (NAFTA). The representatives encouraged the administration to use this opportunity to work towards a fairer playing field that will help further economic growth and harness job creation. Their priorities included agriculture, infrastructure, e-commerce, cargo inspections—and others related to cross-border economic activity.
“Mexico is Arizona’s number one trading partner, and we have over 100,000 jobs in Arizona because of cross-border economic activity. We want to make sure that as we renegotiate NAFTA that they hear our united voice to do no harm and increase economic growth and opportunities for border communities like ours,” said Congresswoman McSally.
On May 18, the Trump administration formally notified Congress of its intent to renegotiate NAFTA, beginning a 90-day window for Congress to provide input. Greater Nogales Santa Cruz County Port Authority, the U.S. – Mexico Chamber of Commerce, and the Border Trade Alliance all testified this week before the United States Trade Representative regarding this intent to renegotiate NAFTA in response to USTR’s Federal Register notice published May 23, 2017, requesting public comment.
Trade with Mexico and Canada is a big component of our economy in Southern Arizona. Cross-border commerce supports more than 1 in 5 jobs in Arizona. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration, trade with Mexico accounted for 40 percent of our state’s exports to foreign markets in 2015, totaling $9.2 billion. Arizona’s bilateral relationship with Mexico directly supports more than 100,000 Arizona jobs.