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BTS reports surface trade with NAFTA partners is up 15.6 percent in March, breaks $80 billion

By Staff
May 31, 2011

The United States Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) reported today that trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico was up 15.6 percent in March 2011 compared to March 2010 increasing to $80.8 billion.

BTS officials said this is the highest level for any month since it began collecting data in 1994, adding that it topped the previous high from April 2008 by 8.8 percent. 
The BTS said that the value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico in March has increased 58.3 percent since March 2009. And BTS also noted that March trade value was up 14.2 percent from the early recession level of March 2008.

Surface transportation, according to the BTS, is comprised mainly of freight movements by truck, trail, and pipeline, mail and Foreign Trade Zones, and nearly 90 percent of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moves by land. According to the BTS 85.8 percent of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moved on land, with 9.8 percent moving by vessel, and 4.4 percent by air.

On a sequential level, March freight value was up 21.5 percent from February.

BTS officials said that the value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico in March increased 18.5 percent since March 2006 and 60.9 percent compared to March 2001. Imports were up 52.2 percent compared to March 2001, and exports were up 72.3 percent for the same period.

The BTS said the value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada was up 15.7 percent year-over-year in March at $48.7 billion. Imports carried by truck were valued 24.4 percent higher in March 2011 compared to March 2010, said the BTS, and the value of exports carried by truck was up 25.5 percent. Michigan paced all states in surface trade with Canada in January at $6.1 billion.

The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Mexico was up 15.3 percent year over year in March at $32.1 billion. Imports carried by truck were valued 15.0 percent higher in March 2011 compared to March 2010, said the BTS, and the value of exports carried by truck was up 15.6 percent. Texas led all states in surface trade with Mexico in February at $11.3 billion.

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