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Report: 90K Arizona Jobs Connected To Trade With Mexico

Report from the Woodrow Wilson Center on Arizona jobs connected to trade with Mexico
Woodrow Wilson Center

Almost 90,000 jobs in Arizona depend on the state’s trade and foreign direct investment from Mexico, according to an economic report released Wednesday.

The figure, according to an analysis by the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, accounts for jobs directly and indirectly connected to goods exported and imported from Mexico and to Mexican companies with investments in Arizona.

The top Arizona industries in trade with Mexico include metal ore mining, electrical equipment production car semiconductor manufacturing, the report says. Almost 9,000 jobs in Hayden, about 70 miles northeast of Tucson, are connected to copper mining operations owned by Asarco, a subsidiary of Grupo Mexico, said Chris Wilson, lead author of the Wilson Center study.

"There are investments like that happening all across the United States,” Wilson said. “I think it goes very much in a different direction from the narrative that we hear about U.S. outsourcing to Mexico. It turns out that that's happening in both directions."

Mexico is the top export market for the four states along the border and it accounts for more than 40 percent of Arizona’s exports, according to the report. That’s a fact that is not lost in public officials such as Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, who’s on an official visit to Mexico City this week. On his agenda: re-opening the city’s international trade office.

Jorge Valencia joined KJZZ in August 2016 as the station's first senior field correspondent based in Mexico City. His reporting focuses on the business and economics between Arizona and Mexico.Valencia previously covered the North Carolina statehouse in Raleigh for North Carolina Public Radio. He reported on a controversial law that curtailed protections for lesbian, gay and transgender people, and on voting rights and environmental policy issues. He also reported on the shooting of three Arab-American students, traveling to Turkey's border with Syria to report on a project the students had started to help Syrian refugees.Valencia began his journalism career covering crime for the Roanoke Times of Virginia and in internships with newspapers including the Wall Street Journal. He has been the recipient of multiple journalism awards for his work in radio and in newspapers. Valencia studied journalism at the University of Maryland and grew up in Bogotá, Colombia, and the suburbs of Washington, D.C.