Radio Address - June 21, 2004
Gov. Rick Perry
Date: June 21, 2004
Topic: Mexico Economic Development Trip
My Fellow Texans
As Governor, I have always believed Texas and Mexico are joined together by more than a common border. We are tied together by hundreds of years of history, a blended culture and a shared future. Millions of our people are descendants of the same blood and heritage, and we live and work each day in a borderless marketplace.
Much is often made of our differences, but we must never lose sight of the long-term vision: to create new opportunities, new wealth and a better future for people who live on both sides of the Rio Grande.
I believe that it is in the best interests of both of our peoples that we work toward the removal of economic barriers that keep people from experiencing opportunity and prosperity. When we allow for the free flow of commerce, energy and ideas, jobs and opportunity are created on both sides of our shared border.
Since the implementation of NAFTA in 1994, cross-border trade between the United States and Mexico has grown to become a $248 billion industry. There are now 12 industries in the Texas economy that export more than $1 billion in goods and products to Mexico each year. We export more than $10 billion each year in computer and electronics products alone.
And yet we can expand our trade ties even more should Mexico encourage further private development of its energy resources. With foreign investment as one of the top priorities of the Fox Administration, I know that the Texas energy sector stands ready to participate and partner in the development of Mexico's vast oil, gas, and electric markets.
By unleashing the ingenuity of energy experts on both sides of the border, we can create thousands of jobs, create new wealth for our people and address Mexico's demand for electricity that is expected to double over the next 17 years.
As neighbors who share a 1,200-mile border, I can envision no future scenario where we can succeed if we pursue separate paths to the future. Texas and Mexico have a common future that requires a cooperative relationship. That is what we seek today - not just for the benefit of our respective governments, but for all our citizens.