The North American Free Trade Agreement that went into effect in 1994 required both countries to open the border to long-distance truck traffic. But labor unions and some safety and environmental advocates have successfully opposed entry of Mexican trucks on the grounds that they do not meet U.S. safety and pollution standards and would be a menace to passenger traffic.
Even when NAFTA trucking is fully in place "we're not going to see thousands of Mexican trucks coming across the border" as opponents fear, said Martin Rojas, vice president of security and operations for the American Trucking Associations.
Most Mexican trucking firms are likely to be discouraged by the high insurance premiums necessary to operate in the United States, and the fact that the United States as one of the world's most competitive trucking industries, he said.
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