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Trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners, Canada and Mexico, was 0.1 percent lower in September 2012 than in September 2011, totaling $77.7 billion, unadjusted for inflation, according to a Nov. 27, 2012, bulletin from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the U.S. Department of Transportation. This is the first year over year decrease since November 2009. Adjusted for inflation and exchange rates, the September 2012 total was $56.3 billion in 2004 dollars, up 1.4 percent from September 2011.
BTS, a part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that the September 2012 value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico rose 35.6 percent from September 2009, shortly after the end of the last recession. Data in the press release are not adjusted for inflation, except for monthly totals in Figure 1 of the press release.
The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico in September increased by 69.6 percent compared to September 2002, a period of 10 years. Imports in September were up 57.4 percent since September 2002, while exports were up 85.9 percent. See Transborder Press Releases for historical data.
Surface transportation includes freight movements by truck, rail, pipeline, mail, other modes of transport, and goods moving into Foreign Trade Zones. In September, 86.4 percent of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moved via land, 9.5 percent moved by vessel, and 4.1 percent moved by air.
U.S.-Mexico September 2012 trade reached $32.0 billion, a 1.2 percent increase from September 2011, while U.S.-Canada trade was $45.7 billion, a 0.9 percent decrease due to a decrease in imports from Canada. For trade statistics by mode, see Table 4 for Canada and Table 6 for Mexico. For the 12-month period ending in September 2012, U.S. trade by surface transportation with Mexico has increased, while U.S. trade with Canada decreased.