Arizona Week Interview: “This is Arizona’s Time”
TUCSON — Governor Ducey’s Senior Advisor for Regional and International Affairs, Juan Ciscomani, joined host Lorraine Rivera on Friday’s “Arizona Week” to discuss Arizona’s improved relationship with Mexico.
On the Arizona-Mexico Relationship:
“This has been a priority for the governor since day one. His first international mission trip was to Mexico City, five to six months after he was in office, which is what opened the door to the kind of relationship we have now. At that point, Governor Pavlovich hadn’t been elected yet. But as soon as she was elected, the governor gave her a call, and that started a great relationship, which become a partnership, and is now a friendship. That kind of relationship that we enjoy, we’re not going to turn back on.”
“Over $8 billion is what we do on exports, and just around $7.2 billion in imports, so we export more than we import. In this relationship, Arizona wins. To put it into perspective, Mexico trades more with Arizona than they do with the entire country of Germany. The combined import-export relationship with Mexico almost reaches $16 billion for the state – huge. It’s responsible for creating about 100,000 jobs directly here in the state of Arizona, plus the indirect jobs as well.”
On the Rocky Point Port:
“This is a great opportunity for the region. They are going to be attracting hundreds of cruise ships into that region. What that means is we are promoting the two-nation destination.”
D. Patrick Lewis: We’re always looking for international opportunities. Obviously, we border two very large countries and having good relations with them is important. I know you’re on the Arizona-Mexico Commission. What can you tell me about that, what is coming out of that commission right now?
Judy Lowe: The Arizona-Mexico Commission is a group (that) encourages and fosters cross-border collaboration between Sonora Mexico, which is our counterpart on the other side of the border, and Arizona.
I co-chair the Real Estate Committee with Mike Hammond, who is a commercial realtor in Arizona. He’s from the private sector. We work with our counterparts in what is known not as the Real Estate Department, but ICRESON, which is the government real estate entity in Sonora.
We work on opportunities for networking and we also interact with the business community in the economic opportunity growth of each of our states.
D. Patrick Lewis: Do you see some exciting things happening with them over the next couple of years?
Judy Lowe: We do. In Sonora, up until very recently, the real estate professional didn’t have to have a real estate license. The shoe shine boy on the corner could really sell a beautiful, beach condominium to an American buyer who maybe felt that they were working with a real estate licensee.
We’re putting in place real estate license law in Sonora. The challenges around it are — how do you enforce the requirement when you don’t have a department that has a regulatory arm to it? We’ve been very, very instrumental in working with our Sonoran counterparts in putting that together.
On June 23-24, the Arizona-Mexico Commission (AMC) hosted its premier annual event, the 2016 AMC Summit: “Visionary Leadership Driving Global Competitiveness” in Scottsdale, Arizona. The high-level forums were recorded and may be viewed below.
2016 AMC Summit: Day 1
2016 AMC Summit: Day 2
2016 AMC Summit: Gala