Mexican Truckers File $30 Billion Arbitration Over Border Program

Mexico’s biggest trucking association Canacar has filed a $30 billion dollar arbitration claim against the United States for refusing to fully open the country to trucks from south of the border, as called for in the North American Free Trade Agreement. According to reports up to 30,000 Mexican truckers have reportedly signed on to the arbitration action, while Canacar is currently not naming the U.S. law firm representing them in the action.

Canacar director Jose Refugio Muñoz Lopez, told one Mexico-based newspaper that the current program allowing Mexican trucks into the U.S. “in no way has it served as a mechanism for U.S. compliance with its requirements under NAFTA,” which went into effect 20 years ago. Muñoz Lopez claims that because the U.S. has failed to fully open its border to Mexican trucks, Mexican trucking companies have been forced to make investments in the U.S. and create cargo-transfer zones along the border.

This action from Canacar comes just a week after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled they would not consider an Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA)-led challenge to current long-haul, cross-border FMCSA program with Mexico, allowing a lower court ruling allowing it to stand.

Mexican trucks that do not participate in the current program, are restricted to a narrow-area just inside the U.S., except for the few carriers that still have authority to run long-haul in the country (outside of the current long-haul cross-border trucking program), which were grandfathered in prior to NAFTA.

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