U.S., Mexico, Canada held ‘robust’ trade talks; vow focus on climate, small businesses


Source: Reuters

Trade ministers from the United States, Canada and Mexico on Tuesday said they held “robust” talks on the new North American trade deal and agreed to focus on fighting climate change and ensuring the voices of underrepresented groups are heard.

The ministers, in a joint statement issued after the first minister-level meeting on the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement that went into effect on July 1, 2020, also vowed to crack down on imports of goods made using forced labor.


Mexico Should Boost Financing for Small Businesses, Ebrard Says

Bloomberg, 11/10/11

Mexico should boost financing and guarantees for medium and small businesses, Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard said. The government needs to reach an agreement with banks to increase access to business loans, said Ebrard, who aspires to the nation’s presidency and is competing with former Mexico City Mayor Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador for the candidacy of the Party of the Democratic Revolution, known as the PRD. Mexico holds presidential and congressional elections next July.

“If the risk from those loans calls for bigger guarantees, the government may fund those guarantees,” he said in an interview yesterday in Mexico City. A program in the capital to renovate the city’s fleet of aging taxes could be used as a blueprint for a national plan to replace older city buses and improve public transportation, he said.

Ebrard served as Mexico City’s public safety minister and social development minister during Lopez Obrador’s mayoral term, which ended in 2006. The PRD is conducting three popularity polls this week to determine its presidential candidate.

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Editorial: New heartland voices on immigration

Tamar Jacoby, Dallas Morning News, 3/18/2010

Advocates are traveling in from around the country. Momentum is building. The crowd that gathers on the mall in Washington on Sunday calling on Congress to pass immigration reform will include immigrants and native-born Latinos, union activists and faith groups. They’ll use the language of the civil rights movement. They’ll appeal to America’s ideals. And it should be a powerful, persuasive message, particularly for Democrats in Congress.

But let’s not forget, to pass immigration reform, we also needRepublican lawmakers. And those on the Mall aren’t the only voices calling for reform; theirs aren’t the only reasons why it’s essential for America.

In the years since Congress last considered an overhaul – since the bitter failures of 2006 and 2007 – a new type of immigration advocate has emerged: small-business owners.

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Turned away by struggling U.S., Mexican immigrants building businesses at home

Houston Chronicle, 3/30/2009

businessFor generations, people of this central Mexican state have trekked to the U.S. and labored on farms and ranches, in factories and construction.

But now this traditional exodus is reversing itself in ways that could profoundly impact both Mexico and America: Immigrants returning to their native lands are starting industries and businesses so they can stay home.

By many measures and anecdotal evidence, waves of illegal immigrants are leaving the U.S. and returning to countries such as Mexico because of the tough economy and immigration enforcement. To respond to this trend, the Mexican government in recent years has increased funding for projects run by immigrants who have returned.

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Op-ed: Small business help lacking in Mexico

Lisa Falkenberg, The Houston Chronicle, 3/30/2009

It’s the kind of story that gives you hope for our troubled neighbor to the south.

Mexican immigrants driven back home by America’s economic recession seem to be taking a part of America with them: entrepreneurial spirit.

As the Chronicle’s James Pinkerton reported in his recent series, some of the immigrants are using their U.S. earnings to start small businesses in their own country, from tequila distilleries to dairy cooperatives.

Increasing economic development aid to Mexico is a difficult concept. Mexico would almost certainly demand control over how the money is spent. And the idea isn’t politically popular here. Many wonder why we should fund new jobs in Mexico, when we need more jobs here. The answer is increasingly clear. Mexico’s fate is entwined with our own.

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