News & Updates

Cross Border Business Forum: San Diego & Baja Norte – A Binational Tourism Destination

San Diego’s unique location along the U.S.-Mexico border provides the perfect home base for visitors to enjoy the best of San Diego, Tijuana, and Baja Norte. While San Diego has much to offer visitors such as the San Diego Zoo, Sea World, and our world-famous beaches, Tijuana, Ensenada, and the wine region of the Guadalupe Valley offer exceptional culinary and cultural experiences to the binational tourist. The combined richness of offerings on both sides of the border and the stark cultural and culinary contrast between San Diego and Baja Norte creates a unique two-nation vacation experience unlike any other in the world.

Please join us in our first Cross-Border Business Forum of the year on February 15th  2018. The forum will take place at the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Further information and registration is available on the Chamber website.


GSA Announces Temporary Closure of Lanes at the I-5 Freeway

The General Service Administration (GSA) announced the temporary closing of lanes on the I-5 Freeway as part of the San Ysidro Port of Entry expansion and modernization project. During the third phase of the project, one lane of the southbound vehicle traffic on the I-5 freeway was temporary closed from 4:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on January 10th to 12th, 2018. Said closure was part of the GSA efforts to provide safety to the construction workers and the travelers that cross the border during the construction period. Following this construction work, three lanes of the northbound vehicle traffic on the I-5 freeway will be temporarily closed from 10:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. until January 31st, 2018. These closures are necessary in order to finish the installation of a bridge over the eastern exit that connects the new administrative building with the existing one.

The San Ysidro POE enhancement project will ultimately benefit the cross-border community with the realignment of I-5, expansion of southbound lanes from 5 to 10, and the construction of eight new additional northbound inspection lanes.

For more information and updates, please visit


13th Annual Binational Delegation to Mexico City

From international trade to the wall, the U.S. and Mexico relationship and our Cali-Baja region is at the forefront of the national political stage. With this has come a growing uncertainty for the future of our binational relationship. As a national model for productive and collaborative cross-border trade and commerce, it is critical that Cali-Baja leaders voice our support for the policies and projects that will continue to strengthen our cross-border communities.

Please join us on this year’s Binational Delegation to Mexico City, taking place April 15th to 18th, 2018. We are happy to announce our continued partnership with the Four Seasons Hotel who will provide a discounted rate for our delegation. The focus of our advocacy efforts this year will be: NAFTA, border infrastructure, immigration and workforce integration, environmental issues such as the Tijuana River Valley, and Mexico’s upcoming presidential elections. Our agenda will include a meeting with the Mexican Senate and other government agencies as well as networking opportunities to strengthen business and political relationships.

Registrations are open! Please visit our website to register and for information about suggested flights, hotel, and event details.

Senate Finance Committee Unanimously Advances McAleenan Nomination as CBP Commissioner

The Senate Finance Committee has acted on the nomination of Kevin McAleenan to become Customs and Border Protection’s new Commissioner. McAleenan has been a member of the U.S. Government’s Senior Executive Service since 2006 and served as Deputy Commissioner from November 2, 2014, when he was appointed Acting Commissioner at CBP.

Under his leadership, CBP has developed strategies that protect the nation’s borders from terrorism and attack transnational criminal networks. He has also implemented innovations that facilitated the U.S. international arrival and departure process, saving the government and travel industry millions of dollars. McAleenan has also advanced the development of CBP’s trade transformation agenda, designed to help America compete in the global economy. The Chamber met with McAleenan during the delegation trip to Washington D.C. in September 2017, and we look forward to continue working with him to advocate for a secure, reliable, and efficient border that enhances cross-border commerce.

Chamber Leads Advocacy on Legislative Solution for DACA Recipients

Following President Trump’s announcement to phase out DACA in September 2017, the Chamber has committed to moving legislation to provide a permanent solution for DACA recipients. The dissolution of DACA will shrink our labor force and deport over 40,000 San Diegans who were brought to the U.S. as children. A bipartisan proposal by Representatives Will Hurd, a Texas Republican, and Pete Aguilar, a California Democrat provides a viable compromise with a solution for Dreamers and border security. The Chamber urges Congress to take action now.

You can learn more about this legislation here, and see the Chamber’s statement here.


NAFTA Renegotiations Continue into 2018

An intersessional round of negotiations for NAFTA were held in Washington, D.C. from December 9th to 15th, 2017. Lead negotiators from each country agreed to postpone the most controversial chapters until the sixth round of negotiations which will take place January 23rd-28th in Montreal, Canada. These remaining issues include rules of origin on U.S.-made content in the automotive sector, restrictions on agricultural products, and the five year sunset clause proposal.

Significant progress was made on chapters related to anticorruption, enterprises managed by the State, environment, financial services, and telecommunications. It is expected that the sixth round of negotiations allows the completion of some chapters and critical agreements in controversial topics.

U.S. Senator Jeff Flake recently spoke to address the economic consequences of leaving NAFTA, including the fact that Mexico spends 26 percent of its GDP on American goods, the increase of poverty and unemployment in the U.S. due to millions of jobs depending on trade, and potential rise of illegal immigration. A video of Sen. Flake’s remarks can be viewed here.

The Chamber continues its advocacy efforts to educate Congress and the business community on the importance of NAFTA and the positive economic impact it has had on the region and nation. On December 12, 2017, The Chamber submitted a letter for the record to the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade which held a hearing titled: “The Future of the North American Free Trade Agreement”. You can read the letter here.

Additionally, on January 3rd, Chamber’s Vice President Paola Avila spoke as Chair of the Border Trade Alliance with host Ezra Shabot of Mexico’s MVS Noticias about the ongoing NAFTA negotiations. You can listen to the interview here.

Avila highlighted that negotiations must be addressed with urgency in order to minimize the uncertainty in the North American economy.