While the U.S. has offered up a preliminary document that it says will satisfy its requirements under NAFTA to allow Mexican trucks to operate inside the borders of this country, the head of Mexico’s largest trucking association says not so fast.
Speaking to reporters after meeting with Mexico’s transportation secretary, Juan Carlos Munoz, president of National Chamber of Motor Transport of Freight, said that Mexican trucks would be unable to meet EPA environmental standards, in part because low sulfur diesel fuel is not available in that county.
Oil companies in Mexico “do not have sufficient capacity to supply the diesel suitable for these new technologies,” Munoz said.
That, if true, should alleviate fears of many in this country and could be a major sticking point as U.S. and Mexican negotiators debate the fine points of any new program.
Allowing Mexican trucks on U.S. roads has been a long standing issue for both governments, as well as industry stakeholders. Many have claimed it will cost Americans jobs while others claim it will enhance trade with Mexico.
Ultimately, as I have written before, to follow international law is as simple as opening the border. That doesn’t mean we have to allow unsafe trucks or unqualified drivers onto our roads. But, just like when any American travels overseas, he or she must abide by the rules of that country, so too must Mexican trucks abide by the rules of this country.
This proposal by DOT seems to me to be a good step in that direction. There will still be some who argue against the program as it’s proposed, and it appears initially, at least, that includes Juan Carlos Munoz.