AT&T (T) to Launch Roaming Plans in Canada and Mexico

5/19/16 Nasdaq

NASDAQ_studioU.S. telecom behemoth AT&T, Inc. recently announced plans of launching new bundled roaming options in Canada and Mexico, effective May 20.

Notably, customers switching to the carrier’s new Mobile Share Value 15 GB and superior plans will be able to avail of unlimited calls, text messaging and data allowance in Mexico as well as between the country and the U.S.

Moreover, new and existing customers on the AT&T Unlimited Plan can make use of voice, messaging and data in Canada, U.S. and Mexico by activating the AT&T Roam North America and Roam North America Data plans on their smartphones and tablets, respectively.

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Immigration Reform 2016: Border Patrol Sees More Undocumented Immigrants Along US Mexico Border In March

4/26/16 International Business Times

Border fenceAfter a dip in the number of migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border over the winter, traffic may be getting busier there. New statistics released by the Border Patrol show a rise in the number of apprehensions in the Southwest last month compared to March 2015.

There were 7,259 more crossings and apprehensions last month compared to February, and 4,452 of the 33,335 apprehensions were members of families crossing together, the agency reported. That rise in crossings, mostly composed of people fleeing Central America via Mexico, follows a controversial push by the administration of President Barack Obama earlier this year in which immigration officials raided homes to deport people living in the country without authorization.

That push did appear to depress migration rates at first, and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson last month praised the lower February statistics while mentioning the raids explicitly. The Department of Homeland Security released a statement alongside the March statistics, noting that the number is still much lower than March 2014, when there were 49,596 apprehensions.

“The Department of Homeland Security continues to closely monitor current migration trends and is working aggressively to address underlying causes and deter future increases in unauthorized migration, while ensuring that those with legitimate humanitarian claims are afforded the opportunity to seek protection,” a statement read. “We also continue to support broader regional efforts to address the humanitarian situation in Central America.”

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From Obstacle to Asset: Re-envisioning the U.S.-Mexico Border

4/19/2016 Forbes

By Christopher Wilson and Erik Lee

forbesThe U.S.-Mexico border has yet again made an appearance in the political theater of the U.S. presidential campaign, starring in its traditional supporting role as a stock villain character. Though the political dialogue sounds like a re-reading of a script written in the 1990s or early 2000s when Mexican migration peaked, the discussion on the ground in most—but not all—U.S.-Mexico border communities long ago moved on to regional economic development. It is a largely positive discussion that could not be more different than what we are hearing at the national level.

Throughout the border region, local leaders from the public and private sectors are asking themselves how they can form cross-border partnerships to leverage assets in their sister cities and strengthen their local economies. They are looking to create a border that connects the United States to Mexico at least as much as it divides our two nations. A close look at the economic data, however, reveals divergent local economies and major border barriers. In our recent report, Competitive Border Communities: Mapping and Developing U.S.-Mexico Transborder Industries, we found that while advanced manufacturing industries such as  aerospace, automotive and medical devices often predominate in Mexican border communities, RV parks, retail and freight transportation are often the most concentrated (and often low-paying) industries in U.S. border communities.

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Clinton on Mexico paying for Trump’s wall: Not gonna happen

4/19/16 Politico

Hillary ClintonHillary Clinton doesn’t think the Mexican government will pay to build Donald Trump’s proposed wall between Mexico and the United States.

Speaking to a conference of North America’s Building Trades Unions as voters headed to the polls in New York on Tuesday, Clinton said her plans are realistic — and Trump’s are not.

“I’m the only candidate on either side of this race with a comprehensive plan to build a 21st century energy system. It’s a real plan with real dollars attached to it,” the former secretary of state said. “It is not building a wall that you are going to get the Mexican government to pay for. Which, you know, somehow I don’t think will ever happen.”

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Priorities for Mexico’s New U.S. Ambassador

4/14/2016 Forbes

By Duncan Wood and Viridiana Rios

forbesMexico has named their new ambassador to the United States, Carlos Manuel Sada Solana. The priority of the new ambassador is clear: to represent Mexico in a more constructive and positive manner, especially to the American people and the U.S. Congress, and to identify the Representatives and Senators that can have an influence on shaping such a positive image. This will be important not only in the context of this year’s presidential election, but also for the long-term health of the bilateral relationship.

The principal task of Ambassador Carlos Sada Solana should not be to respond in a direct manner to the current anti-Mexico discourse that is rampant during this electoral period, but rather to address this rhetoric in a strategic fashion. The importance of Mexico’s relationship with the United States should be emphasized along with the significant achievements that Mexico has had in recent years. This includes American endorsement of the reforms, the creation of the High Level Economic Dialogue (HLED or DEAN in Spanish), the development of intelligence cooperation, as well as bilateral efforts in energy, climate change, organized crime, and migration.

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Mexico looks to bolster its image in U.S.: government

4/7/16 Reuters

hand shakeMexico aims to deploy a “comprehensive strategy” to promote its image in the United States more vigorously, the government said on Thursday, days after fresh criticism of the country by Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump.

Trump, who has attacked Mexico over trade, illegal immigration and crime, on Tuesday threatened to block remittances from undocumented Mexican migrants if elected, and also slammed the announcement of a new Ford plant in Mexico.

Opposition lawmakers and diplomats have accused the Mexican government of failing to counter such rhetoric, and on Tuesday Mexico said it was replacing its U.S. ambassador and the deputy foreign minister responsible for North American relations.

Carlos Sada’s nomination as ambassador and the appointment of Paulo Carreno as deputy minister are part of a “comprehensive strategy” to ensure Mexico’s contribution across the border is better understood, a senior foreign ministry official said.

“This is just the most visible element of a strategy that will involve not just the foreign ministry, but also other ministries,” Ana Paola Barbosa, the chief of staff to Foreign Minister Claudia Ruiz Massieu, told a news conference.

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Prioridades para el nuevo embajador en Estados Unidos

4/7/2016 Animal Politico

By Duncan Wood and Viridiana Rios

us mex flagMéxico cambió su embajador en Estados Unidos, nombrando a Carlos Manuel Sada Solana. La prioridad del nuevo embajador es clara: representar a México en una forma más constructiva y positiva, sobre todo ante el congreso estadounidense, identificando a los representantes y senadores que pueden tener influencia en la relación bilateral. Esto será importante no solamente en el contexto de este año electoral, también para la relación a largo plazo.

La principal tarea del embajador Sada Solana debería ser una: no responder de forma directa al discurso antiméxico que se está detonando por el periodo electoral, sino estratégica. Se debe enfatizar la importancia de nuestra relación con Estados Unidos, y los logros significativos que ha tenido México en los últimos años. Ello incluye la aprobación de reformas, la creación del Dialogo Económico de Alto Nivel (DEAN o HLED por sus siglas en Inglés), el desarrollo de una frontera inteligente, los esfuerzos bilaterales en energía, cambio climático, crimen organizado, y migración.

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