Mexico will file USMCA complaint to halt costly cargo inspections

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NUEVO LAREDO, TAMAULIPAS.- Mexico’s economy ministry is urging the U.S. state of Texas to remove inspections of cargo crossing the border, which it said in a statement on Monday is causing millions of dollars in losses for U.S. and Mexican firms.

The Mexican government will file a complaint with the trade facilitation committee under the United States-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) free trade agreement, which came into effect in 2020.

Earlier this month, Texas started inspecting commercial vehicles crossing into the state from Mexico at a bridge connecting the Texas city of Brownsville with the Mexican city of Matamoros.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has ordered similar inspections before. In April 2022, cargo inspections prompted significant supply chain disruptions until Abbott reached a deal with the governors of four neighboring Mexican states to increase security efforts.

The current inspections are causing costly delays of 8 to 27 hours, which are mainly impacting perishable foods and are generating millions of dollars in losses for both U.S. and Mexican companies, Mexico’s economy ministry said in the statement.

Abbott, a Republican, has frequently criticized Democratic U.S. President Joe Biden’s efforts to stop the smuggling of people and contraband across the U.S.-Mexico border.

(R