Spending by Mexican tourists in the United States totaled $20.3 billion in 2016

Texas Insider Report:
WASHINGTON, D.C. –
Congressman Henry Cuellar announced the passage of H.R.
951, the United States-Mexico Tourism Improvement Act of 2019, in the
U.S. House of Representatives. The Congressman’s bill, on which fellow Texan,
and U.S. Representative, Michael McCaul serves as original cosponsor, seeks to
reinvigorate spending by Mexican tourists in the U.S., which declined in 2017,
after peaking at $20.6 billion in 2016. Mexican tourism to the United States
peaked at nearly 19 million visitors in 2016, constituting 1 in 4 of all
international tourists. The bill will next be sent to the U.S. Senate for
consideration.

“Tourism is a critical economic driver for the U.S.
economy,”
said Congressman Cuellar. “Mexico is the second-largest
source of tourists to the United States. Improving bilateral tourism with
Mexico, will have significant economic impact. I introduced the United States-
Mexico Tourism Act to stimulate economic growth by bolstering tourism between
our two countries and strengthening our relationship with Mexico.”

“I would like to thank House Foreign Affairs Committee
Chairman Eliot Engel and Ranking Member Michael McCaul for taking up this bill
and advancing it through committee.  I also want to thank Congressmen
Gonzalez, Sherman, and Allred for co-sponsoring this bipartisan piece of
legislation. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to pass the bill given the
critical role tourism plays to our economy.”

Mexican Tourism in Decline

The number of Mexican visitors has declined since 2016,
while overall international tourism to the U.S. has increased. In 2017, there
was 6.1% decline in Mexican visitors to the U.S. By comparison, in 2018, all
international tourists to the U.S. totaled 76.6 million visitors, a two-year
increase of 4.2 percent from 2016. These international visitors spent a
combined $255.5 billion on travel exports to the U.S.  Conversely, the
2017 decline in Mexican visitors to the U.S. would equate to about $1.24
billion in lost revenue to U.S. businesses and entrepreneurs.

Expanding Bilateral and Joint Tourism

The bill will specifically:

  1. Continue deepening
    bilateral tourism through governmental cooperation between the United
    States and Mexico;
  2. Improve third-party
    tourism to the United States and Mexico though join international
    promotional efforts; and
  3. Prioritize and expand
    the tourism industries in both counties by emphasizing exchanges in
    international economic sectors, including hospitality and accommodation,
    retail, and cultural education.

Read H.R. 951 here.

See Congressman Cuellar speak on the House Floor about H.R.
951 here