In this piece we lay out our bull case for North American economic integration and cross-border trade. We begin with a section that focuses on renewed challenges to complex global supply chains, including increased geopolitical risk, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) concerns, a new emphasis on resilience, and the responsiveness that supply chains must have to compete for 21st century consumers.The second section focuses on our specific North American thesis. North American energy infrastructure has become increasingly integrated in the past 15 years, which has unlocked growth in multiple industries, including U.S. chemicals and Mexican automotive. Meanwhile, the frenetic construction of refrigerated warehousing in the U.S. has powered growth in the food trade between the North American nations. In our view, these three industries – automotive, chemicals broadly conceived, and food – are dependent on deeply embedded regional supply chains, are all growing and will drive further growth in cross-border North American trade.The new USMCA regulatory framework and ongoing investment in cross-border transportation infrastructure will accelerate already existing trends. As such, we are bullish on North American cross-border trade for years to come.
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John Paul conducts research on multimodal freight markets and holds a Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Michigan. Prior to building a research team at FreightWaves, JP spent two years on the editorial side covering trucking markets, freight brokerage, and M&A.