Trucks wait in queue for border customs control to cross into the U.S. at the Cordova-Americas border crossing bridge in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico April 8, 2019. REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez
CIUDAD JUAREZ/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Long delays at the U.S.-Mexico border crossing for goods destined for American plants and consumers are hitting the U.S. auto industry, and the gridlock reduced by half the number of northbound trucks that crossed the entry point last week.
Washington’s decision to move some 750 agents from commercial to immigration duties to handle a surge in families seeking asylum in the United States has triggered the delays at crucial ports on a border that handle $1.7 billion in daily trade.
“The situation in Ciudad Juarez is very serious because these auto parts go to plants in the United States and obviously they put at risk the operation in the United States,” Eduardo Solis, the president of the Mexican Auto Industry Association (AMIA), said on Monday.
The North American auto industry is highly integrated and many car parts cross the border several times before they are finally installed on a vehicle.
Seventeen 17 hours before the crossing to El Paso even opened on Monday morning, trucks were already