MAY 30, 2019, WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce Binational Board of Directors gathered in Washington D.C. on May 29th for their annual Board of Directors Meeting, Conference and “Good Neighbor Awards” Dinner Gala. The conference and board meeting were held at the Mayflower Hotel while the Dinner Gala was at the Organization of American States Building.
The conference began with a panel discussion regarding Border Issues. Panelist agreed that much work is needed as trade is being impacted by current immigration challenges.
“We can’t enforce our way out of this challenge. We need to support Mexico on their southern border” said David Aguilar, Principal of Global Security and Innovative Strategies and Former Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
Dr. Jose Zozaya, Chairman of the Board, President, General Manager and Executive Representative for Kansas City Southern de Mexico said “We are facing delays in trade on freight because of immigration problems. We are not doing what is needed. U.S. and Mexico need to work together on the southern border of Mexico.”
The second panel conversation covered the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA)/North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Update with feedback from Sergio Garcia, Former Minister of Economic Affairs at the Embassy of Mexico in the U.S., Ricardo Martinez, Secretary of Economic Development for the State Aquascalientes, Gary H. Baise, Principal Attorney, OFQ Law and General Counsel for the U.S. Grains Council and Agricultural Retailers Association and Angel H. Ramirez, Mexico Market Leader for Baker Tilly.
Following the panel discussions, the Board of Directors of the U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce convened for their annual meeting where they announced their support for the passage of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.
Board Members were then invited to the White House for briefings from key Trump Administration officials who shared current trade policy and legislative objectives relating to the passage of the USMCA, overall border security and immigration issues.
Following the White House Briefing, Board Members received an update from the U.S. Trade Representatives’ Office by John Melle, Chief Negotiator and Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for the Western Hemisphere, on specifics of the USMCA and how it improves upon the current NAFTA framework.
Later that evening, the “Good Neighbor Awards” were presented at the Dinner Gala at the Organization of American States. Rabbi Levi Shemtov provided an inspirational invocation. As Honorary President of the U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce, H.E. Martha Barcena, Ambassador of Mexico to the United States provided the keynote address advocating for continued cooperation between our two countries.
Recipients of the 2019 Good Neighbor Award were Mr. Jayson Adair, CEO, Copart Inc. and Mr. Francisco J. López Espinoza, Owner and CEO, Multicolor Grupo Gráfico for the Private Sector Leadership Award; Hon. Martín Orozco Sandoval, Governor of the State of Aguascalientes for the Public Sector Leadership Award; Hon. Dee Margo, Mayor of the City of El Paso, Texas and Hon. Armando Cabada Alvidrez, Mayor of Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua for the Border Leadership Award; and Mr. Javier Vélez Bautista with the Special Leadership Award for his many years of support toward the U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce.