October 9, 2000
NAFTA brings export boom to New York, study finds
The North American Free Trade Agreement has led to "a dramatic increase" in exports of New York products to Canada and Mexico since its implementation in 1994, a new study has found.
Exports from the Empire State to the two NAFTA partner countries increased by nearly half, or 48.6 percent, from the inception of the trade agreement through 1999, according to the report by the Council of the Americas and the U.S. Council of the Mexico-U.S. Business Committee.
Under NAFTA, tariffs among the three countries were eliminated or sharply reduced. Virtually all U.S. products can now enter Canada duty-free, while the average Mexican tariff applied to U.S. goods has been reduced to 1.8 percent. As of 1999, exports from New York to Canada and Mexico totaled $12.9 billion.
Production of goods for export to Canada directly supported more than 54,000 jobs, while products made for shipment to Mexico supported another 7,400 for a total of more than 61,000. The study said the actual number of jobs benefiting from trade with the two countries is much higher, including related jobs in transportation, banking, finance and other sectors.
"Both large corporations and small businesses in New York are benefiting from NAFTA," said the study, NAFTA Delivers For New York.
Economic slowdowns in some regions of the world led to a drop in New York's exports to non-NAFTA countries in 1998 and 1999, but exports to the two neighboring countries continued to increase in both those years, according to the report.
Among the companies it identified as benefiting from NAFTA were:
Fortitech Inc. in Schenectady, a maker of vitamin additives that has doubled its sales in Mexico since NAFTA took effect;
Multiplier Industries of Mount Kisco, which produces battery packs and has doubled its sales in both countries in recent years;
Knight Marketing Corp. of Johnstown, a producer of automotive maintenance products that relocated a factory from Ontario to New York as a result of the free-trade agreement; and
Applied Robotics of Glenville, which has enjoyed increased sales in Mexico after NAFTA took effect.
The Council of the Americas is the leading business organization dedicated to promoting regional economic integration, free trade and investment, open markets, and the rule of law throughout the Western Hemisphere. For the study on New York and similar analyses of NAFTA's impact in other states, go to http://www.counciloftheamericas.org/coa/publications/naftastudies.html.