High-level representatives from the U.S. and Mexican governments met virtually on December 2, for the 13th Plenary Meeting of the 21st Century Border Management Process Executive Steering Committee (ESC) to encourage increased bilateral collaboration on key issues affecting our shared border. The United States and Mexico committed to continue close coordination on strengthening efficiencies for legitimate trade and travel, modernizing our border infrastructure and technology, promoting public safety, and combatting transnational crime.
The Department of State’s Assistant Secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs Brian A. Nichols, and the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistant Secretary for International Affairs Serena Hoy led the U.S. delegation and co-hosted the ESC alongside the United States Ambassador to Mexico, Kenneth Salazar. Mexico’s Chief Officer for North America of the Secretariat of Foreign Relations Roberto Velasco and Ambassador of Mexico to the United States Esteban Moctezuma led the Mexican delegation. Additional representatives from relevant agencies in both governments also joined the meeting.
The ESC reviewed major binational border achievements during 2021, including the final completion of the three-phased modernization project at the port of entry of San Ysidro, providing additional capacity at the busiest border crossing for vehicular traffic between the United States and Mexico. The ESC adopted Action Plans to guide bilateral efforts to modernize and expand ports of entry along the shared border; facilitate the flow of trade and documented travelers between the two countries; and strengthen cooperation on public safety in the border region.
The ESC meeting continued high-level efforts by the United States and Mexico in the ongoing transformation of U.S.-Mexico bilateral relations. The ESC built upon progress made in the North American Leaders’ Summit, the November 2021 bilateral meeting between President Biden and President López Obrador, the High-Level Economic Dialogue, and the High-Level Security Dialogue.
The 21st Century Border Management Process works to improve border security and promote the economic competitiveness of our nations. As a part of this bilateral cooperation mechanism, the Bilateral Executive Steering Committee has held annual plenary meetings since its launch in 2010, spanning three Mexican and three U.S. presidential administrations.