The Texas economy has lost billions of dollars in product as a result of the recent increased border inspections, economists estimate.
Governor Greg Abbott’s increased inspections at the Texas Mexico border were implemented earlier this month. Since then, trucks looking to enter the country have been forced to wait excessive hours to get through, and nearly a quarter of those trucks looking to enter have been put out of service for being unsafe.
Now, Governor Abbott has done away with the border inspections after reaching an agreement with Mexico, but the economic impacts are already being felt across the state.
“What we’ve what we found is that the over the entire period that this occurred, which is basically April 6 until April 15 the Texas economy probably lost about $4.3 billion in gross product,” said Ray Perryman, an economist, to Fox San Antonio.
“It’s not just the just the items themselves, but also the downstream effects of not having those items. There’s also components of manufacturers, goods not being delivered. There’s things moving back and forth across the border that enter our wholesale and retail chain that are not being delivered. And then and then there’s some of the food that comes across the border is processed before it’s so that processing can’t take place. There’s a lot of different things that go into this,” Perryman said.
“We are still assessing the full economic impacts of the Governor’s truck inspections. This has implications both short and long term for companies. There are the short-term losses of product, increased transportation and logistics costs, and other damaging effects. There are also the long-term consequences like impacts to buyer/seller relationships, supply chain reliability fears, and more. We do know that approximately $28.7 million of fresh produce crosses the Texas border daily, for a whopping total of $9 billion of fresh produce a year. Each day the inspections were in place meant that those $28.7 million of produce were left sitting on bridges waiting to cross,” said The Fresh Produce Association of the Americas in a statement.
While impacts have been major, experts predict that the Texas economy will return to normal within a few weeks now that the extra inspections have been lifted.
“Give it, you know, 10 days to a couple of weeks, I think things will be back to normal,” said Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller.