The growth in trade among the three North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) countries may have slowed, but the United States, Canada, and Mexico are still each other's best customers.
Statistics released last month by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) showed that the value of NAFTA surface trade grew 4.9 percent from 2006 to 2007. Though that was well below the 8.9-percent growth rate recorded from 2005 to 2006, it still represented a record $797 billion.
As for where all that freight was moving, the BTS numbers showed that in 2007, more freight came into the United States by truck from Mexico ($137 billion) than went out ($93 billion). The picture was reversed on the U.S.-Canada border, where $150.4 billion of freight was trucked into the United States, and cargo valued at $174.3 billion headed north.
The BTS includes freight shipments by road, rail, and pipeline in its surface trade statistics. About 90 percent of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moves over land.