/ Modified mar 18, 2019 9:32 a.m.

Mexico Raises Minimum Wage in Border Communities

Many companies already pay above the new rate to stay competitive.

Every year, $25 billion in goods travel between Arizona and Mexico. As Mexico's new president marks 100 days in office, his administration has already taken steps to boost the economy along the country's northern border. New incentives include nearly doubling the minimum wage and reducing sales and federal income taxes. This week, Arizona 360 looked at how that push is playing out and its impact on Southern Arizona.

At the start of 2019, people earning minimum wage went from making a little less than $5 per day (88 pesos) to more than $9 (176 pesos). In Nogales, Sonora, Lorraine Rivera met with Manuel Hopkins, whose family operates CS Food Service. The company imports restaurant supplies and distributes them across Mexico. Starting pay is well above the minimum wage at more than $13 per day (260 pesos). Hopkins explained why higher wages are part of the company's business model.

"Our strategy is that if we have a better pay salary as a base we feel confident our people will stay here," Hopkins said. "We have to be competitive as far as salary is concerned."

Arizona 360
Arizona 360 airs Fridays at 8:30 p.m. on PBS 6 and Saturdays at 8 p.m. on PBS 6 PLUS. See more from Arizona 360.
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