Remarks by U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur L. Ross at the U.S.-Mexico CEO Dialogue Leadership Dinner

AS PREPARED FOR DELIVERY
Thursday, April 11, 2019

Merida, Mexico

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross addresses the U.S.-Mexico CEO Dialogue Leadership Dinner in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico

Thank you, Fernando, for that kind introduction. Thank you to, Governor of the State of Yucatán Mauricio Vila Dosal for hosting this dinner.

And thank you, too to the Mexico Business Coordinating Council and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for organizing this CEO Dialogue and Business Summit.

I am delighted to be here with so many of my colleagues from the U.S. Departments of Energy and State, the United States Trade Representative, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. Embassy in Mexico.

I congratulate the new Presidential Administration in Mexico for its strong emphasis on improving the economic development of this region in particular. We also thank them for assisting us as we confront the crisis at our southern border.

This group’s job is to jointly explore the role the private sector can play in creating the economic conditions needed to improve the lives of the people in Southern Mexico and Central America. I am also looking forward to our discussions about the USMCA; its benefits to Mexico and the United States; and its passage.

I participated in the last meeting of the U.S.-Mexico CEO Dialogue in October in Washington, D.C., shortly after USMCA negotiations were successfully completed.

Concluding those negotiations was an achievement for our three countries, and it involved the participation of many people in this room.

Now, we enter the next phase of educating legislators of USMCA’s significance to the business communities in the three countries, and to the workers who will benefit most from its passage. This U.S.-Mexico CEO Dialogue is representative of the close relationship the United States has with Mexico. It’s also an indication of the fortitude and ardor that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and Mexico’s Business Coordinating Council, have toward promoting our mutual interests.

AMCHAM Mexico is celebrating its 102nd anniversary this year, a milestone that underscores the importance of our long-standing bilateral relationship.

The bonds between our two countries are deep. We share democratic values and cultural ties. Millions of Americans trace their heritage to Mexico.

Mexico is our second largest export market and is our third largest trading partner. Our integrated economies generated over $678 billion in two-way trade in goods and services last year. We also share significant cross-border investment.

In 2017, U.S. foreign direct investment in Mexico totaled more than $109 billion.Mexico’s investment in the United States now tops $35 billion.

Our economic relationship supports growth, opportunity, and good jobs for millions of citizens in both our countries. The United States has developed an excellent working relationship with President López-Obrador. And we again thank the administration for its support on the many issues of mutual concern.

Again, I thank the members of the U.S.-Mexico CEO Dialogue for your time and expertise in elevating and strengthening our nations’ commercial relationship. Thank you, and I look forward to our discussions tomorrow.