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Mexican Border Crossings Rose 2.6% Last Year, DOT Says

4/10/2012 1:15:00 PM
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Tom Biery/Trans Pixs

The number of trucks that crossed into the United States from Mexico and Canada rose 1.7% last year from 2010, with the Mexican border seeing a larger increase, the Department of Transportation said.

Of the 10.4 million truck crossings into the U.S., 4.9 million were from Mexico, a 2.6% increase over 2010, DOT’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics said Friday.

The U.S.-Canadian border saw just an 0.8% uptick in truck traffic into the United States, BTS said.

The larger increase from Mexico comes mainly from manufacturers that are moving operations to Mexico from Asia, said Nelson Balido, president of the Border Trade Alliance, an association of companies that depend on international trade within North America.

“They’re opting for North American manufacturing rather than Asian manufacturing,� Balido told Transport Topics.

He cited as examples recent announcements from Nissan Motor Co. and Ford Motor Co. that the companies will invest in large manufacturing operations in Mexico.

BTS reported only on the numbers of vehicles and passengers, not on freight tonnage or the monetary value of the freight.

Train traffic increased 3.7% in 2011 over 2010, BTS said. On the Canada border, there was a 2.1% increase, while Mexico’s border had 9.1% growth.

DOT has approved several Mexican carriers under its cross-border trucking program to allow Mexican carriers full access to U.S. roads, but only several companies have been approved so far.

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