The Border

Binational cooperation has created a region of immense opportunity

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The 10 U.S. and Mexican states that make up the border region are home to nearly 100 million people and the world’s fourth-largest economy.

From public health to natural resource management to national security, what happens on one side of the border has a major impact on the other—most particularly in the arena of economic development.

More and more, the United States and Mexico manufacture goods together. Deep integration has spawned new initiatives that build on these increasingly unified economic regions. Among hundreds of examples are these from the  North American Research Partnership:

  • The California-Baja California border economy is reaping the rewards of advanced manufacturing development that now encompass audio and video equipment, medical devices and semiconductors. An urban renaissance in Tijuana rounds out the drivers that have put this region on the forefront of cross-border economic development.

  • Arizona-Sonora is adding aerospace (employing nearly 18,000 workers on both sides of the border), hardware and furniture manufacturing to its traditional strengths in mining and tourism.

  • Paso del Norte (Chihuahua-New Mexico-Texas), where binational manufacturing began in the 1960s, has become a highly competitive hub in leather goods, computers, communications equipment, motor vehicle parts, medical devices and household appliances

  • Coahuila-Nuevo LeónTamaulipas-Texas, straddling the busiest commercial U.S.-Mexico crossing point, has naturally developed into a freight logistics and hauling powerhouse, with growing opportunities in motor vehicle parts manufacturing.  

  • Lower Rio Grande Valley-Tamaulipas has seen motor vehicle body and trailer manufacturing double from 2009 through 2013. Communications equipment manufacturers like Nokia support more than 16,000 jobs, and software publishing is now burgeoning.

Along this fast-growing, immensely promising U.S.-Mexico region, USMFS has built strong binational alliances across governments, academia and the business sector. With appropriate backing from the public and private sectors, the Foundation will leverage its experience and network to influence new ventures that deliver on the technological, scientific, educational and human promise of this potent region.