California-Baja California Regional Economic Competitiveness Forum Recap


(Left to right) Senator Correa listens to Chris Wilson, Mexico Institute, Erik Lee, NARP Executive Director, and Rick Van Schoik, NARP Portfolio Director, present findings from break-out sessions

We are delighted to be working with a number of excellent partners on the U.S.-Mexico Regional Economic Competitiveness Forums (RECF), including USAID Mexico, the Council of State Governments-West, the Border Legislative Conference and the Mexico Institute/Woodrow Wilson Center. The series of four regional economic competitiveness analyzes the future of the U.S.-Mexico border economy with a focus on the following border sub-regions: California – Baja California; Arizona – Sonora; Texas -Chihuahua- New Mexico; and Texas– Coahuila- Nuevo Leon- Tamaulipas.

Together with these abovementioned partners we kicked off the series in San Diego on March 21 with a reception at the Marriott Marquee in downtown San Diego on March 21, 2014. Keynote speakers and honorees included Remedios Gómez Arnau, Consul General of Mexico in San Diego, and Andrew S.E. Erickson, U.S. Consul General in Tijuana. The following morning, key business, government and other stakeholders convened to begin the California-Baja California RECF. Panels included discussions on the regional economy in terms of competitiveness and innovation (panelists from the Tijuana Economic Development Corporation, the Port of San Diego, U.S. Commercial Service, and the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation); ports of entry management and infrastructure planning (panelists from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the San Diego Association of Governments, the Imperial County Transportation Commission, the San Diego – Tijuana Smart Border Coalition and Project-21 / Frontera-21 of the U.S.-Mexico Border Mayors Association) ;and cross-border economic clusters (panelists from the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, the Cali Baja Mega Region Initiative, the Institute for Regional Development at ITESM).

Both speakers and attendees participated in afternoon break-out sessions to gather more detailed input on the regional economy, ports of entry management and infrastructure planning and connecting the Californias to the global economy. Click here to read the findings from the forum. To view more photos of the event, please click here.

We look forward to the second forum which will take place this Friday, May 16th, in Rio Rico, Arizona. Please consider joining us in participating in this forum or the following forums in Texas.