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Arizona, Mexico leaders come together for “Gateway to Arizona” series

NOGALES – The Arizona-Mexico Commission is celebrating three border towns and their contributions to our state.

On Wednesday, several state and local leaders went to Douglas, Nogales, Yuma and San Luis in their “Gateway to Arizona” series. During the events, local leaders discussed the uniqueness of Arizona’s borders and their plans for economic development.

“Nearly 100,000 jobs in Arizona are dependent on trade in Mexico. So our economies are tied together. We want to highlight that and we want to make sure from the state level that we’re doing everything possible,” said Kirk Adams, chief of staff for Gov. Ducey. “So that the businesses the citizens who are engaged in trade and transit find it to be effective and sufficient, so we attract more investment into our state.”

According to the Arizona-Mexico Commission, Mexico contributes $15.5 billion in trade with Arizona; China trails in at $4 billion and Canada $3 Billion. Wednesday’s event gave local leaders and trading partners the opportunity to get together and discuss what is going right and what needs to be done.

“This is a great opportunity for cross-border trade, cross-border opportunities. To talk about cross-border security. A whole wide range of topics,” Adams said. “It gets all the players in the same room.”

One local Nogales fruits and vegetable importer who attended the event said he is hopeful for the recent North American Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico. The agreement could be signed in November.

“Well, I think we saw a very favorable renegotiation of the NAFTA agreement,” Jaime Chamberlain President of Chamberlain Distributing said. “We’re hopeful that everything gets past in the Mexican Congress and the U.S. Congress and Canada, as well.”

Charity Freeman

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