EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – Juarez industry leaders are worried about Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s vow to increase highway truck inspections following the deaths of 53 migrants in the back of a truck in San Antonio.
The concern is that more roadside inspections will slow down the transportation of manufactured products from Mexican border factories to auto, medical equipment and appliances plants in the Midwestern United States.
“The checkpoints that the Texas Department of Transportation operated near border crossings back in April obstructed the flow of cargo from Juarez maquiladoras and generated considerable loses to the region,” said Thor Salayandia, president of the Juarez Chamber of Industry.
Salayandia said Mexican exporters and the U.S.-run border factories are monitoring the situation and are ready to again send their cargo through the Santa Teresa, New Mexico, port of entry to avoid Texas roadways. Juarez maquiladoras manufacture anything from car parts for Detroit automakers to giant blades for wind turbines.
Abbott in April ordered DPS to conduct stepped-up truck inspections near the border out of frustration with the U.S. government’s “inaction” in stopping ever-increasing flows of illegal migration. The governor did away with the supplemental inspections after the governors of Mexican states bordering Texas signed agreements to do their part in combatting organized immigrant-smuggling gangs.
Abbott has not publicly disclosed details of where the new truck checks would happen. A DPS official this week in Eagle Pass, Texas, said the checkpoints would be along known smuggling corridors but not right-smack at the U.S. border, like last time.
Salayandia said the chamber of industry has alerted Juarez exporters to be ready to detour their cargo trucks to New Mexico if Abbott’s new highway checks begin to hinder lawful transnational commerce. He also said Juarez trade officials would be meeting with U.S. Customs and Border Protection personnel to express their concerns.