Mexican leaders discuss the need for cooperation with migration

The United States and Mexico share more than a common border.

Friday two Mexican leaders spoke at the USF library to stress the need for the United States to develop a solid partnership with Mexico in support of migration.

Manuel Angel Nunez Soto, governor of Hidalgo, and Jorge Santibanez, president of the El Colegio de la Frontera Norte, discussed the current issues of migration in the United States.

Santibanez said after 2020 the migration numbers will continue at a steady pace but no longer increase. Mexicans come due to the large growth of population that can not be supported in Mexico. Santibanez said Mexico cannot sustain all of the people in the country.

Santibanez, who spoke on the “Current Situation of Mexican Migration to the United States,” used data and statistics from Mexican and American sources to outline the current patterns of migration.

In 2000, there were more than 20 million people of Mexican origin living in the United States. Of those, about 8 million were immigrants from Mexico.

“There are no other solutions for our demographic population (other than migration),” Santibanez said.

Santibanez said Mexican immigrants are needed since the baby boom generation is retiring and the American population is not growing quickly enough.

According to Santibanez’s statistics, without migration, only 1.3 million people will be working to support the U.S. retirement system by 2050. This is a decrease from the current 2.5 million. Santibanez said when migration is added into the labor statistics, there would be about 2 million working to support the retirement system in 2050.

“The problem in the United States is stating considerations that the migration policy is based on sovereignty and national security principles (and not on economic or labor values),” Santibanez said.

Nunez Soto, who spoke on “Mexico-U.S. Relations at the Crossroads: Implications for Immigration Policy,” said immigration is an issue that requires a working relationship between the United States and Mexico.

“We are two sovereign nations, but in many ways we are one people,” Nunez Soto said.

Nunez Soto said in Mexico, there are about 48 million people under 25 years old. He said the work force provided by the migrants will help strengthen the United States’ economy, making the standard of living better for all workers.

“Mexican immigration provides workers to fill in gaps in the labor market and adds to the growth of the American economy,” Nunez Soto said. “The human aspect of this (migration) is really important. It matters very much” said Nunez Soto.

Because the Sept. 11 attacks have made security policies stricter toward immigrants, Nunez Soto said the United States and Mexico should work together to strengthen the American fight against terrorism. He said Mexican immigrants working in the United States can help.

“The tragic events of Sept. 11 affected the entire world, and we in Mexico express our solidarity to the people of the United States both in our heartfelt sympathy and our desire to work together to restore peace,” Nunez Soto said.