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The Mexico-China Economic Relationship: Examining Licit and Illicit Trade Practices

May 24, 2022

Mexico and the United States are each other’s number one trading partners worldwide. However, China is rapidly expanding its economic presence in the Latin American region. China and Mexico began official relations in 1972, and by 2003, declared an official “strategic partnership.” Since 1972, China’s economic presence in Mexico has grown tremendously, with China rising to become Mexico’s number two trading partner worldwide. Chinese economic interest in Mexico spans licit and illicit ventures, with notable interest in Mexico’s abundance of natural resources, wildlife, and drug trade.  In an increasingly competitive global economy, the Mexico-China relationship will be an important one to observe for the United States.  

This explainer video by Mexico Institute intern Rachel Corley seeks to examine China’s presence in Mexico through the lens of licit and illicit trade.

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Mexico Institute

The Mexico Institute seeks to improve understanding, communication, and cooperation between Mexico and the United States by promoting original research, encouraging public discussion, and proposing policy options for enhancing the bilateral relationship. A binational Advisory Board, chaired by Luis Téllez and Earl Anthony Wayne, oversees the work of the Mexico Institute.   Read more