Three of Five Modes Carried More U.S.-NAFTA Trade in December 2013 than in December 2012
Three of the five transportation modes – truck, vessel and pipeline – carried more U.S.-NAFTA trade in December 2013 than in December 2012, according to the December TransBorder Freight Data released today by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS).
BTS reported that pipelines showed the most year-to-year growth at 21.7 percent as the value of overall U.S. trade with its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico rose 6.4 percent from year to year.
Trade by Mode
Truck, which carries nearly three-fifths of U.S.-NAFTA trade and is the most heavily utilized mode for moving goods to and from both U.S.-NAFTA partners, rose 7.2 percent year-to-year while rail declined 2.3 percent.
Trucks carried 57.2 percent of the $90.1 billion of U.S.-NAFTA trade in December 2013 accounting for $26.3 billion of exports and $25.2 billion of imports. While the value of freight carried by rail decreased from year-to-year, rail was still the second largest mode, at 14.9 percent, followed by vessels at 11.2 percent, pipeline at 7.7 percent and air at 4.0 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 79.7 percent of the total NAFTA freight flows.
Trade with Canada
U.S.-Canada trade by pipeline, of which 89.2 percent was imported, increased the most of any mode from December 2012 to December 2013, growing 21.9 percent. U.S.-Canada pipeline trade comprised 95.2 percent of total U.S.-NAFTA pipeline trade in December. Vessel freight exports to Canada increased by 64.8 percent from December 2012 due to an increase in exports of mineral fuels.
Trade with Mexico
The value of U.S.-Mexico trade by pipeline had the largest percentage increase of any mode from December 2012 to December 2013, growing 17.5 percent. Freight moved by vessel and air between the U.S. and Mexico increased by 14.8 percent and decreased by 0.2 percent respectively.
See BTS Transborder Data Release for summary tables and additional data. See North American Transborder Freight Data on the BTS website for additional data for surface modes since 1995 and all modes since 2004.