The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) recently released data that shows that trans-border truck freight is growing. In March, trans-border freight totaled $107.2 billion USD. Trucks were responsible for moving 63% of all freight by value between the U.S, Canada, and Mexico. In total, trucks carried $67.4 billion of U.S. freight in March 2019. Comparatively, trucks moved $66.5 billion in March 2018.
Trucks continue to be the most utilized mode for moving good between both Canada's and Mexico’s borders. Trains, airplanes, ships, and pipelines accounted for the rest of the freight movement. The three busiest ports for truck trans-border freight were Laredo, Texas ($15.8 billion), Detroit, Michigan ($9.6 billion), and El Paso, Texas ($5.1 billion). These three ports accounted for 45.3% of total trans-border truck freight.
President Trump had recently made threats to implement tariffs on Mexican goods, however, he has since backed down on these. These treats threw the transportation and logistics industry into chaos, as many worried about what new tariffs would mean for the companies and consumers that relied on the goods transported between the U.S.-Mexico borders. Now, the U.S., Mexico, and Canada are expected to ratify the new USMCA trade agreement soon, which will replace the current North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
The data released by the BTS shows trans-border freight between Mexico and the U.S. rose by almost 3% in March. The total freight moved was valued at $36.4 billion. The majority of freight moved by trucks included computers and computer parts ($13.7 billion), motor vehicles and auto parts ($10.7 billion), and electrical machinery ($10.7 billion).
Meanwhile, Canada truck freight decreased by 0.4% in March. However, trucks still moved $31 billion in freight and accounted for 57.2% of all trans-border freight between the U.S. and Canada. This data shows that trucks are the main transportation mode used to move freight across borders, which is great news of the trucking industry.
In total, U.S. trans-border freight was valued at $107.23 billion in March, which was up more than $13 billion from the month previous and up more than $1 billion from March 2018. This marks the first time trans-border freight totaled more than $100 billion in 2019!