Trade via Otay Mesa Continues to Increase

Created: 02 October, 2018
Last update: 27 July, 2022

By Ana Gomez Salcido

Trade between the United States and Mexico continues to grow through the Otay Mesa Commercial Port of Entry, according to a new SANDAG report.

In 2017, there was $42.8 billion in trade between the two countries through the Otay Mesa Commercial Port of Entry. The total trade registered in 2017 was an increase of 2.4 percent compared to the previous year, when there was a $41.8 billion in trade.

“Trade in Otay Mesa continues to grow and now more than ever after a new trade deal between Canada, Mexico and the U.S., and although we still need to wait for Congress, the reach in a new deal is a good sign for those who were waiting to move forward. The investments that were in hold can now move forward,” said Alejandra Mier y Teran, executive director of the Otay Mesa Chamber of Commerce to La Prensa San Diego. “We expect an increase in trade next year because the economy in general is doing good. A lot of the products that are produced in the region are for consumption when the economy is doing good like electronic devices, although we also have medical devices that are used even if the economy is not doing well.”

Some of the products that are produced in the Cali-baja region include televisions, audio and visual equipment, automobiles and automotive components, medical equipment and supplies, navigational measuring and control instruments, and produce like strawberries and tomatoes.

Mier y Teran explained that the products that are exported from Mexico to the U.S. like televisions have 40 percent of U.S. content because of the parts that the product has inside, versus a product imported from China that only has around 2 percent of U.S. content inside.

“The trade war between the U.S. and China is also going to benefit the region because it will reduce China’s competitiveness,” she added. “With this trade war there are going to be more businesses taking their facilities to Tijuana, and that will benefit the region.”
According to SANDAG’s report, in 2017, there were $15.3 billion in trade through the Otay Mesa Commercial Port of Entry in exports by truck, and there were $27.5 billion in trade in imports by truck.

Last year, Mexico ranked as second place of the export market for the U.S. and was the third largest trading partner for the U.S. with $557 billion in total trade.

The construction of new infrastructure also help to facilitate trade between the U.S. and Mexico, which included the opening of new facilities and the improvement and extension of old ports of entry.