Experts say a new bi-national agreement just signed in San Antonio has the potential to solve issues on several fronts: from immigration to water supply.
San Antonio was chosen for the signing of the Mexico-U.S. Entrepreneurship and Innovation Council (MUSEIC) agreement because of its bi-cultural assets that can assist business growth between the two countries.
The purpose of the MUSEIC is to establish a unified North American entrepreneurial pathway to promote competitiveness, trade and innovation.
San Antonio hosted the council’s first U.S. meeting last week at UTSA. It was attended by all 24 council members, 12 from each country. They discussed specific areas of agreement and began formulating the foundation for future bi-national economic projects.
Renowned nuclear physicist and former fellow of Los Alamos National Laboratory Thomas Bowles is council member for the technology sector. Bowles said the collaboration can be expected to solve problems common to both countries, including natural resources, drug trafficking, and immigration.
"Solve it at the source, rather than trying to build a fence," Bowles said.
Bowles predicts increasing entrepreneurship in Mexico will naturally take the pressure off immigration by creating more jobs.
"So that people see a future there. And there's a reason to educate their kids to grow up to take these high-paying jobs or better-paying jobs. Then we can reduce the pressure on the border because there's no need to come to the U.S. to take what's usually some sort of manual labor or fairly low-paying job if at home, you can get a job that is better," he said.
Bowles said creating high-paying jobs in Mexico also would starve out drug lords by taking away their control of the Mexican economy. He sees the two countries collaborating to seek new water resources and on other natural resource issues, such as oil and gas production.
The MUSEIC was established in 2013 as part of the high-level economic dialogue between President Barack Obama and Mexico President Enrique Peña-Nieto. The Small Business Development Center at UTSA, which helped host the signing event, has established 18 SBDCs in other countries, including Mexico, Central and South America.