Bob Cook of the Cook Strategies Group points out the economic importance and job creation impact of US exports to Mexico.

An article that was recently published in the border industry trade publication, Border Now, clearly illustrates the importance that the US-Mexican trade relationship plays in that increasing US exports to Mexico have resulted in significant job generation in recent years. The Border Now piece was penned by Bob Cook. Cook is currently the president and CEO of the El Paso, Texas-based Cook Strategies Group, but, over the past decade, he has also served as the president of the El Paso Regional Economic Development Corporation and the vice President of the Borderplex Alliance.

In the pages of the May Issue of Border Now, the author points out that 2014 bi-lateral trade between the US and Mexico exceeded US $5 billion, and that last year was the second consecutive year that trade between the two countries surpassed this figure. According to Cook, only two way trade with Canada and China was more prolific. In the same year, 2014, US exports to Mexico totaled a bit over US $240 billion. This figure, as one might suspect, was topped by the sale of US made goods to Canada, which totaled US $312 billion. Quite impressively, however, US exports to Mexico, in terms of dollar value, nearly equaled combined overseas sales to three other US trading partners. When considered together, American made exports to China, Japan and the UK in 2014 were totaled at almost US $245 million. These numbers illustrate the importance of bi-lateral trade between the US and Mexico in dollar terms. It is also important consider the significant impact that this commercial relationship has on US job creation.

Cook’s piece in Border Now magazine points out the impact of US exports to Mexico in terms of job creation, and concludes that, in all states, trade between the two countries is at the root of significant economic opportunity generation for American workers. As many would suspect, most job creation that is linked to US exports to Mexico has occurred in the border states of Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas. The CEO of the Cook Strategies Group notes that a bit more than 59% of US exports to Mexico originate in one of the four aforementioned entities. In terms of job creation, however, of the 6.2 million positions that were supported by the export of US manufactures in 2014, 14.4%, or 890,000 jobs were related to US exports to Mexico. Of this number border states were the recipients of the lion’s share of the positive job creation impact derived from bi-lateral US-Mexico trade. Between them, US exports to Mexico supports 480,000 jobs. Of the four border states the biggest beneficiaries are the states of Texas and California with 345,000 and 98,000 jobs respectively. Although US-Mexico exports supported jobs in all fifty states, Cook points out that there were four states in which the US-Mexico relationship sustained at least 25,000 export related jobs in 2014. They were:

  • Arizona
  • Illinois
  • Michigan
  • Ohio

While there are many who are quick to point a critical finger at the US-Mexico trade relationship, it is important to keep in mind that nearly a full 15% of almost 900,000 export related jobs in the country are attributable to the delivery of US exports to Mexico. This fact underlines the fact that US economic policymakers should be aware of the importance of the country’s relationship with its southern neighbor, and take measures to ensure that the volume of US exports to Mexico grows. The volume of US products to Mexico has grown at 86.5% over the past five years. This rate of increase is greater than that experienced with any other trading partner during the years 2009-2014.