Reynosa Mayor Notices Increase in Visitors as McAllen’s Sales Drop
MCALLEN - Businesses in downtown McAllen are dealing with an economic slowdown, while Reynosa’s are experiencing an upswing.
Jonathan Lara works at a perfume store in McAllen. He said many Mexican citizens come to the U.S. to buy products and resell them in Mexico.
“At this time of the year, there is usually more people, more business, more sales from Mexico,” he said.
Lara said, unlike previous years, this Valentine’s Day hasn’t drawn shoppers to their store.
“I would say ever since Trump got into power, the dollar started to rise and people don’t want to buy,” he said. “They think twice, especially the ones coming from Mexico. Those are the ones who have stopped coming to buy.”
Lara said the shop where he works at, like other businesses, will do all they can to stay open and give people a reason to come shop in the U.S.
“We’re going to continue to create more promotions to provide the best price available for our Mexican customers,” he said.
It’s a different story on the other side of the border. People were seen packing sidewalks as they shop in Reynosa.
Reynosa Mayor Maki Ortiz said the newly appointed U.S. president isn’t to blame. She said cartel violence appears to be easing.
“These past months have been very quiet. Reynosa has become a city where people go out to the plaza, and to the cinemas,” she said. “We have seen an increase in all of this to include people who are coming from the other side, the United States. They’re showing up more frequently and we feel very happy about that.”
Ortiz said both countries need to remember they’re fighting a familiar foe.
“Organized crime, the import and export of… trafficking weapons, human trafficking - which is extremely serious,” she said. “These types of things are true enemies of both countries.”
However, she doesn’t agree with President Trump’s methods to secure the border.
“National security is not about having armies or cameras or having a militarized strength. It’s about having job opportunities for both sides of the border,” she said.
The mayor plans to strengthen Reynosa’s relationships on both sides of the border.