The United States, Mexico and Canada have come a long way since NAFTA launched a new era of commerce across the continent nearly 20 years ago. The trilateral relationship now accounts for more than $1 trillion in trade each year. In fact, each day, the United States conducts $3 billion dollars in trade with Canada and Mexico.
Yesterday, at the North American Competitiveness and Innovation Conference (NACIC) in La Jolla, Calif., U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker met with her Mexican and Canadian counterparts, Canadian Minister of International Trade Ed Fast and Mexican Secretary of Economy Ildefonso Guajardo, to discuss how all three countries can continue to work together to promote mutual economic growth and prosperity.
In a joint statement, the ministers pledged to work together to keep the region competitive and help North American businesses and workers succeed through enhanced regulatory cooperation and coordinated efforts to facilitate increased trade, including the ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations.
North America is already one of the most attractive places for businesses to invest and create jobs. More than 460 million consumers live in the region. Combined, the U.S., Canada and Mexico account for one-quarter of the world’s GDP. North America is a source of abundant and affordable energy, is home to a skilled workforce, and has made tremendous investments in research and development.
The United States, Canada and Mexico also invest in one another. U.S. foreign direct investment in Canada and Mexico was $449.3 billion in 2012, up 9 percent from 2010. Canada and Mexico’s foreign direct investment in the U.S. was $243 billion in 2012, up 9.3 percent from 2010. Later this week, both Canada and Mexico are sending large delegations to the first-ever SelectUSA Summit, which is designed showcase the U.S. as the premier place to do business and attract additional foreign direct investment to America.
To build on our strengths, North American leaders are working together to promote business investment, boost economic development efforts, encourage entrepreneurship, and promote North America as a tourism destination.
Increasingly, what benefits Mexico and Canada benefits the United States – and vice versa. It is in our shared mutual interest to pursue an agenda of joint economic growth and development.