President Bush's modification of a moratorium on granting operating authority to Mexican motor carriers has signaled the fulfillment by the United States of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), thereby allowing Mexican truck and regular-route services within the U.S. interior to begin.
U.S. Transportation Secretary Norman Y. Mineta last week directed the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to act on the 130 applications received thus far from Mexico-domiciled truck and bus companies seeking to transport international cargo in cross-border services in the United States or to provide regular route services between Mexico and the United States.
"We look forward to working with Mexico, in the same way that we already are cooperating with the Canadians, as we synchronize our activities in advance of opening the border for expanded passenger bus and truck operations," said Secretary Mineta.
Bus and truck services will begin only after the FMCSA reviews Mexican carrier applications and grants provisional operating authority to qualified Mexican companies seeking this authority.
The change in the moratorium affects only international cargo and service between the United States and Mexico. It left in place the moratorium on permits to Mexico-domiciled motor carriers for providing truck or bus services between points in the United States.