Mayors come together as negotiations underway to modernize NAFTA

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and the mayor of Tijuana are calling on federal leaders to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

They hosted a meeting Wednesday with border mayors to advocate for cross-border trade.

As negotiations to revise NAFTA began Wednesday in Washington, border mayors from San Diego, Canada and Mexico came together in San Ysidro, the busiest port of entry in the Western Hemisphere.

It was a symbolic meeting place, as Mayor Faulconer and Tijuana Mayor Juan Manuel Gastelum led the group, urging federal leaders in Washington to support the modernization of NAFTA. 

The 23-year-old agreement was designed to remove barriers of trade and spur economic growth and create jobs. Mayor Faulconer said there has never been a more important time for San Diego to champion international trade.

"Trade between Mexico and the U.S., moving through San Diego has increased three-fold, totaling $60 billion each year. San Diego exports have grown to $5 billion under NAFTA and trade between our three countries supports nearly 14-million jobs in the U.S, Mexico and Canada," Mayor Faulconer said.

Two weeks ago, Mayor Faulconer, Mayor Gastelum and 15 binational border mayors signed a formal resolution, calling for continued efforts to engage and inform federal leaders about the modernization of NAFTA. Mayor Faulconer will travel with a delegation to Washington next month to advocate for cross-border commerce and open trade.

Categories: Local San Diego News