UPS has added Honduras and Nicaragua to its UPS Express Freight network, offering the two Central American nations day-definite transportation services. This development comes on the heels of UPS’ announcement that it more than doubled its freight capacity to Latin America during the first quarter of 2012.
Scott Aubuchon, UPS’ director of international airfreight, said Nicaragua, in particular, demanded time-critical cargo service. According to Aubuchon, the nation exports nearly 58 percent of its commodities to the U.S., including seafood, apparel and gold, and trade between Nicaragua and the U.S. has increased 21 percent per year over the last two decades.
Trade between Honduras and the U.S. has also surged in recent years, according to a press release. After reinforcing its manufacturing capabilities to serve the North American automotive industry, Honduras now ranks as the third largest exporter of automobile wiring harnesses to the U.S.
Plus, “The country’s recent diversification of exports over the past decade from primarily agricultural goods to industrial goods has made the U.S. and Germany two of its largest export trading partners, with 65 percent of those exports bound for the U.S,” according to the press release.
Aubuchon only expects imports from Honduras and Nicaragua to the U.S. to continue to grow, thanks to near-sourcing and the continued effects of the 2006 free-trade agreement among the Dominican Republic, Central America and the U.S. “The combination of low labor costs and the geographic proximity to the U.S. market make Nicaragua and Honduras well-positioned to compete in today’s global marketplace,” he said in a statement.
“These export factors, combined with the growing demand for U.S., European and Asian consumer goods among the young populations in these countries, position them for substantial growth over the next few years,” Aubuchon continued.
In addition to Honduras and Nicaragua, UPS is also interested in Mexico. According to a press release, the integrator introduced a new route to Guadalajara during the first quarter of 2012, opening up markets in Mexico’s western-Pacific region.