Bill Puts Brakes on Mexican Trucks
Posted on Mar 11, 2009
President Obama’s $410 billion spending bill may paradoxically end funding for a cross-border trucking program between Mexico and the U.S. Critics of the program cite safety issues around Mexican trucks, while Mexican officials decry protectionism as policies surrounding the NAFTA trade agreement continue to fall apart.
The L.A. Times:
Congress has hit the brakes on a Bush administration program to give Mexican trucks wider access to U.S. roads, putting President Obama in the middle of a politically sensitive trade dispute.
A $410-billion spending bill that passed the Senate on a voice vote Tuesday would end funding for the cross-border trucking program, one of the most contentious issues to arise out of the 1993 North American Free Trade Agreement.
Critics of the cross-border program—including the Teamsters and lawmakers from both parties—have expressed concern about the safety of Mexican trucks.
Before 2007, Mexican trucks had been limited to a narrow zone north of the border, where they transferred their cargo to American big rigs.
Under the spending bill approved by Congress, Mexican trucks won’t be allowed in the U.S., which could spark retaliatory action by Mexico.