As part of his continued leadership of efforts to secure Mexico's inclusion in Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-Laredo), Chair of the Pro-Trade Caucus, today sent a bipartisan letter encouraging U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk to formally notify Congress of the intent to include Mexico in the TPP agreement. The TPP is a free trade agreement aimed at facilitating U.S. trade engagement in the Asia-Pacific region's huge and growing markets.
This letter, signed by a bipartisan coalition of eleven lawmakers, builds on the momentum of the recent announcement by the U.S. and eight other countries involved in the TPP Agreement that they have extended an invitation to Mexico to join the TPP negotiations. In addition to Congressman Cuellar, members of Congress who signed this letter are: Congressman Francisco "Quico" Canseco (TX-23), Congressman Bob Filner (CA-51), Congresswoman Kay Granger (TX-12), Congressman Ruben Hinojosa (TX-15), Congressman Gregory Meeks (NY-6),Congressman Jim Moran (VA-8), Congressman Devin Nunes (CA-21), Congressman Jared Polis (CO-02), Congressman Silvestre Reyes (TX-16) and Congressman Pete Sessions (TX-32). After Congress receives notification, a 90-day consultation process begins on U.S. negotiating objectives with Mexico.
"The United States and Mexico have a dynamic relationship that extends far past their geographic connection as neighbors. Dollar for dollar, good by good -- our economies depend on each other to grow. The U.S. has enjoyed continued export growth to Mexico, and over 463,000 Texas jobs depend on trade with Mexico today," said Cuellar. "Mexico is our second largest export market, and, at $1 billion in commerce exchanged each day, one of our most important trade partners. The process to include Mexico in TPP is continuing to progress, and I look forward to working with my colleagues toward securing Mexico's inclusion in this landmark trade agreement."
Only weeks after Cuellar and a bipartisan group of 27 lawmakers sent a March 2012 letter to U.S. Trade Representative Kirk urging support for Mexico's inclusion in the negotiations toward the creation of the TPP, the U.S. and eight other countries negotiating the TPP Agreement extended an invitation to Mexico to join the TPP negotiations.
Mexico is a crucial trade partner that contributes to the U.S.'s steady economic growth. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce reports that trade with Mexico accounts for approximately 6 million American jobs, and increased trade with Mexico has the potential to further boost job creation in the United States. Additionally, Texas exports $86 billion worth of products to Mexico, and trade with Mexico supports 463,132 jobs in Texas. According to the Secretariat of the Economy of Mexico, Mexico is the second largest export market for the United States, accounting for nearly $200 billion in consumption of U.S. goods in 2010. In this same year, U.S. exports to Mexico increased $34 billion, which helped promote GDP growth.
In addition to the United States, the countries currently negotiating the TPP are Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.