For the first time in its history, Port Laredo was the leading U.S. trade gateway for international trade for the first quarter of the year. (Photo: U.S. Customs and Border Protection) Borderlands is a weekly rundown of developments in the world of United States-Mexico cross-border trucking and trade. This week: Mexico, Port Laredo remain on top for US trade; WeFreight expands operations into Mexico; cross-border carrier acquires 140 Navistar tractors; and nearly 50 pounds of cocaine seized from cargo ship in Texas. Mexico, Port Laredo remain on top for US trade For the fourth straight month, Laredo, Texas, retained the No. 1 spot among the nation’s 450 international gateways for trade. During May, Laredo recorded a 7.4% year-over-year (y/y) increase in total commerce to $28.1 billion, according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau data analyzed by WorldCity . In addition, for the first time, Laredo was the leading U.S. trade gateway through the first quarter of the year, according to Ken Roberts, WorldCity’s founder and president. The first quarter refers to the period from January through March. “The position had long been held by the Port of Los Angeles — until the first quarter of 2022 — [when] Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport took the top spot with a record-setting $83 billion in trade,” Roberts recently wrote in Forbes . Port Laredo’s trade through March 2023 rose 14.32% over its previous year total, to $77.96 billion. During May, the Port of Los Angeles ranked No. 2 and reported $25.6 billion, while Chicago O’Hare ranked No. 3 at $24 billion. Auto parts ($2.3 billion), passenger vehicles ($1.4 billion) and heavy-duty trucks ($1 billion) were the top three imports from Mexico to the U.S. through Laredo. The top exports from the U.S. through Laredo were auto parts ($1.4 billion), gasoline ($387 million) and diesel engines ($277 million). Mexico also continues to solidify its place as the top U.S. trading partner in 2023. In May, Mexico was the top U.S. trade partner at $68.7 billion, a 0.34% y/y increase. It’s the fifth time in the past six months that Mexico ranked No. 1. In May, Canada ranked No. 2 at $67.6 billion in trade, while China ranked third, reporting $46.6 billion in trade. “Mexico’s expanding manufacturing base has offered an alternative to producing in China,” according to research from Luis Torres, senior business economist in the San Antonio Branch of the . “While data on recent nearshoring is thin and evidence of it is largely anecdotal, increased protectionism and related industrial policy are consistent with less global trade, more regional trade, and nearshoring and reshoring.” Freight forwarder has opened an office in Mexico City aimed at increasing the company’s global footprint. “Mexico is a dynamic market with a growing economy, and we are delighted to be part of its logistics future,” Miguel Trejo, managing director of WeFreight Mexico, said in a . , a subsidiary of Mexico-based trucking and logistics company Traxion, recently added 140 LT model tractors from Navistar to its fleet. The post appeared first on .