US-Mexico Trade to Continue During Restricted Travel Period

According to the US and Mexico governments, it is essential to take measures to reduce the impact that COVID-19 could have on the economic and commercial relationship between the USA and Mexico. The two governments aim to maintain US-Mexico trade during this time.

Leaders agreed to apply restrictive measures at the border to control the flow of people between Mexico and the USA.

US-Mexico trade during restricted travel period

People boarding a flight at an airport
Individuals engaged in lawful cross-border trade are permitted to travel between the US and Mexico.

The United States temporarily limited inbound land border crossings from Canada and Mexico to “essential travel”.

In March 2020, Presidents Trump and López Obrador met to discuss collaborative efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19. According to White House spokesperson Judd Deere, they agreed on maintaining the bilateral trade relationship over this time and speeding up the implementation of the USMCA (US, Mexico and Canada) trade agreement to support economic recovery in member countries.

“President Trump and President López Obrador agreed on the importance of preserving trade and key services, regardless of travel restrictions” Deere said, referring to an agreement to limit movements across the United States-Mexico border only to essential trips.

Who is permitted to travel between Mexico and the US? 

Citizens and lawful permanent residents returning to the United States, including:

Individuals traveling:

  • for medical purposes (e.g., to receive medical treatment in the United States)
  • to attend educational institutions
  • to work in the United States (e.g., individuals working in the agriculture industry who must travel between the United States and Canada or Mexico in furtherance of such work)
  • for emergency response and public health purposes (e.g., government officials or emergency responders entering the United States to support federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial government efforts to respond to COVID-19 or other emergencies)

Individuals engaged in:

  • lawful cross-border trade (e.g., truck drivers supporting the movement of cargo between the United States, Canada and Mexico)
  • official government travel or diplomatic travel.

The two leaders agreed to combine efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This shall ensure the health of both nations and address the economic effects resulting from reduced mobility along the shared border.

US-Mexico trade further recognizes that critical services such as food, fuel, healthcare and life-saving medicines must reach people on both sides of the border every day.

What can businesses do to continue their US-Mexico operations?

Staff in Mexico researching US-Mexico trade relations
Businesses operating in and out of Mexico can utilize Professional Employer Organization (PEO) services and the USMCA agreement to support their business and trade activity.

During this time of restricted travel and US-Mexico trade activity, businesses may struggle to stay operational between the US and Mexico. This is especially true for business executives or expanding multinationals who are looking to find staffing support for their operations.

Businesses operating in and out of Mexico have a number of options thanks to the availability of Professional Employer Organization (PEO) service providers, and the implementation of the USMCA agreement to support US-Mexico trade.

It is highly recommended to consult a local trade law expert to understand your abilities to continue conducting trade between the US and Mexico.

For those needing to hire staff in Mexico due to their own inability to travel, or their need to continue operations, executives can seek out a Professional Employer Organization in Mexico. These organizations employ local staff on behalf of the hiring company based overseas. Through a co-employment model, the hiring company can manage employees in Mexico, while the PEO takes care of all payroll and employment compliance obligations.

Reduce burdens of current travel restrictions and lack of knowledge on hiring requirements in Mexico by engaging with an experienced team who can support your business continuity during this time.

Engage with experienced legal and payroll experts in Mexico

Travel restrictions between the USA and Mexico complicates doing business in Mexico. A back office provider like Biz Latin Hub offers a suite of corporate secretarial and other back-office services such as commercial representation, company formation, legal services, hiring and recruitment. If you need to take care of your trade and/or staffing needs in Mexico now, we can help. 

Biz Latin Hub is composed of a team of bilingual legal and accounting experts, who can help you in English, Spanish and Portuguese. Reach out to our team here and find out how we can serve your specific needs.

Learn more about our team and expert authors.

Infographic: Explaining international professional employer organization in Latin America

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