Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Mexico is Alberta's fourth largest trading partner
By 5 May 2021 1 min read
To mark Cinco de Mayo*, today’s Owl is taking a look at Alberta’s trade with Mexico.
Although dwarfed by our trade with the United States—which gobbled up 84 per cent of Alberta’s international merchandise exports last year—Mexico is our fourth largest trading partner (China is second and Japan is third).
Mexico is also part of the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement on free trade that replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement when it entered into force on July 1, 2020.
At $841 million, Alberta’s exports to Mexico were down in 2020 compared to 2019 by 23 per cent. This is roughly the same as the drop in our exports to all countries (22 per cent) last year.
In 2020, canola seed was our largest export to Mexico at about $180 million followed by propane at $127 million.
It was the reverse in 2019 when propane sales to Mexico were $308 million and canola seed sales were $140 million.
Other key exports from Alberta to Mexico include beef, plastics and wheat.
We also sell Mexico a fair amount of malt ($21 million worth in 2020 and $35 million in 2019). We can’t say for sure what it is used for, but some of it may end up in the delicious Mexican beers that are exported around the world.
Because imports are allocated to the province in which they land rather than where they end up, the flow of goods into Alberta from Mexico is not as accurate as export statistics. With this in mind, Alberta imported almost $1.4 billion worth of goods from Mexico last year.
As with our exports to Mexico, the dampening effects of the pandemic pushed down annual imports in 2020 by 17 per cent.
While agricultural products such as avocados, tomatoes and berries figure prominently in what we import from Mexico, telecommunications equipment topped the list of specific products last year. In 2019, it was truck tractors for semitrailers.
*The celebration of Mexican-American culture known as Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican Army's victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.
Answer to the previous trivia question: Released in 1977, the original Star Wars movie cost $11 million (U.S.) to make.
Today’s trivia question: Approximately how many kilometres is the drive from Edmonton to Mexico City?