New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Mexican Ministries Sign Cross-Border Education, Foreign Affairs Agreement
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's three-day trip to Mexico resulted in an agreement regarding an education and foreign affairs collaboration and partnership, but immigration was not on the table.
According to the New Jersey governor's office, the agreement with the Mexican Ministries of Public Education and Foreign Affairs, the National Council for Science and Technology and the state of New Jersey reaffirmed increased ties and participation in joint research initiatives. The agreement also grants cross-border fellowships and student and teacher exchanges for graduate students and professionals, as well as online educational programs.
"Like so many other successful ventures across business, industry, or education, our institutions of higher education thrive on a rich, fluid and enlightening exchange of ideas. Mexico and New Jersey have a tremendous amount of value to contribute to each other and to the world, and strengthening our economic ties and partnership means also focusing on the ties between our two peoples in academia and the private sector," Christie said in a statement.
The agreement also aims to provide education and training to students seeking "specific needs" within an industry and business. The agreement also seeks academic material exchanges between the private industry and higher education institutions. The Memorandum of Understanding between New Jersey and Mexican officials would offer collaboration in organizing conferences, seminars and teacher training courses for English and Spanish language teachers.
Christie added, "This partnership will help solidify a vibrant exchange of academic, cultural, and professional ideas between New Jersey and Mexico, with an eye on workforce alignment, education and skills training, and research that is so vital to new innovations and economic development in each of our states."
Ahead of Christie's trip to Mexico, he told the press the topic of immigration is not of highon his priority list. Christie said the topic might be discussed, but the main focus of the trip was to promote economic and trade cooperation. With the MOU and the collaboration of cross-border students, teachers and researchers, the participants are still to obey "relevant" authorities on immigration, customs, health and national security provisions and taxes.
The agreement is effective for only four years; thereafter, the MOU can be automatically renewed for additional four-year periods.
The MOU was agreed upon a day after Christie signed another agreement with a social media platform connecting Latin American and Caribbean businesses with commercial opportunities throughout North America. The social media platform, ConnectAmericas.com, is the first to secure a deal with a U.S. state.
During the trip, Christie also met with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.
"I have been struck so far in President Peña Nieto's term how often the president, himself a former governor, has met with the governors of U.S. states. He knows, instinctively, from his own experience, that in both of our countries the leaders of the states have a major role to play in addressing issues, forging ties, and solving problems," Christie said.
Peña Nieto has also recently increased ties with California. The Golden State's governor, Jerry Brown, visited Mexico in late July to discuss climate change and economic cooperation. Peña Nieto also visited California in late August and spoke to the state's legislature, applauding their efforts on becoming "immigrant-friendly."
Subscribe to Latin Post!
Sign up for our free newsletter for the Latest coverage!