The Arizona Department of Transportation said nearly 8,000 more trucks, 400,000 more passenger vehicles and 900,000 more people entered the United States through Arizona in 2015 than in previous years, figures impact the state's economy and job market.
U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) data shows $30 billion in imports and exports passing through Arizona’s ports during the year, including $16.8 billion in Arizona exports to Mexico during 2015. Approximately 100,000 Arizona jobs are supported by trade with Mexico, and visitors from Mexico spend $7.8 million daily in Arizona.
“The impact of our ports of entry is far reaching,” Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey said. “The increase in cross-border traffic is another example of Arizona’s flourishing business climate and growing opportunities for economic development.”
U.S. DOT data show that traffic through ports of entry in Nogales, San Luis, Douglas, Lukeville, Naco and Sasabe has increased steadily over the years.
“This amount of cross-border traffic and the continual upward trend in volume means we must continue to make smart investments at the border and ensure that our ports of entry have the necessary staffing and resources to operate effectively, efficiently and safely,” John Halikowski, director of the Arizona Department of Transportation said. “ADOT is working to improve transportation infrastructure at the border, along with traffic flows, with projects slated for state Route 189 and Interstate 19, and ongoing efforts to study how to build Interstate 11 from Nogales to the Hoover Dam Bypass Bridge.”
David Farca, president of the Arizona-Mexico Commission, noted that the figures don’t reflect the fact that ports handle southbound traffic as well.
“In reality, our ports of entry processed close to 800,000 trucks, 17 million cars, 48 million people and 1,600 trains,” Farca said. “The ports of entry that connect Arizona to Mexico are of great significance to our economy.”