Mexico Would Benefit from a Wall Too

One of the many sideshows overshadowing serious national and international issues is over who will pay for the big beautiful wall along the southern border that President Trump has promised to build. The president says Mexico will. The Mexicans say they won’t.

Lost in the barrage of schoolyard taunts are several important matters. First, not only would the United States benefit from secure barriers along the border, but so too would many Mexicans. Second, taxing, or imposing fees on, remittances sent out of the country (not just to Mexico) is not an unreasonable proposition.

The lawless border between the two countries is not just a problem for the United States. Communities in Mexico are plagued by criminal cartels that engage in cross-border activities like smuggling of drugs and human beings. Interdicting rampant criminal activity along the border would loosen the grip of these violent syndicates on communities in northern Mexico, ending their reign of terror, and enabling honest and productive businesses to flourish.

From the standpoint of the United States, collecting fees on money transfers out of the country would not be entirely punitive. Remittances represent a very significant but often overlooked cost of mass immigration. According to the World Bank, $133.5 billion flowed out of the U.S. in 2015. In 2016, remittances to Mexico (mostly from the U.S.) hit an all-time high of $27 billion – exceeding that country’s revenues from oil exports.

This massive outflow of money harms local economies in the U.S. The $133.5 billion that was earned here and shipped elsewhere is money that is not recirculated through local economies, stimulating local economic growth and generating revenues for local governments. Moreover, many of those working here illegally are being paid under the table, so the money is not taxed when it is earned. It is not unreasonable, therefore, for the United States to consider recouping some of the cost of the fence by collecting fees or taxes on funds being transferred abroad.

Most importantly, regardless of who pays for the fence, both the United States and Mexico would benefit greatly from a secure shared border that is open to legitimate commerce and travel, but secured against illegal immigration and criminal activity.

About Author


Dan is the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)'s President after joining the organization in 1982. He has testified more than 50 times before Congress, and been cited in the media as "America's best-known immigration reformer." Dan has appeared on virtually every significant TV and radio news/talk program in America and, in addition to being a contributing editor to, has contributed commentaries to a vast number of print media outlets.


  1. avatar

    Mexican Media is PURE Racist

    Touting the end to the white man as they claim America belongs to Mexico…how OFFENSIVE.

    Remember the Alamo. We won that conflict in the end to claim Texas independent from Mexico….also, go back even further in history when Spain invaded Mexico, where inter-breeding with the Europeans and the Mayans/Aztecs [also MASS killings too] created the Latinos. They stole Mexico from the Native Indians. History is not on the Latino side on their Racist allegations.

  2. avatar

    The answer will never be the wall and that is a fact. The only answer is that Mexico becomes a 2nd to a 1st World country

    • avatar

      Well let me see …. besides you live in the wrong country .. I can name many examples of who/what you consider “dark” that are more advanced n accomplished than your ancestors n descendants will ever be. .. do you want to be educated?

  3. avatar

    Notice how our media runs to Mexican politicians to breathlessly report on their condemnation of our efforts to enforce our laws. You see almost zilch in our press about the reports on Mexico produced by Amnesty International. These quotes are from the 2016/17 summary:

    “There continued to be reports of torture and other ill-treatment, enforced disappearances, extra judicial executions, and arbitrary detentions. Impunity persisted for human rights violations and crimes under international law. Journalists continued to be killed and threatened for their work. Violence against women remained a major concern.”

    There is nothing new about these reports, as they have been reporting the same thing for decades. A few years ago they said the Mexican government turned a “blind eye” to criminal violence against citizens or in some cases worked with the gangs. When Trump made his remarks about rapists from Mexico he was referring to reports, including those made by Amnesty, that the majority of women brought here by coyotes were sexually assaulted along the way.

    Local politicians brave enough to fight the drug cartels are lucky to live a week. Not to mention their number one cartel leader “escaped” twice. But the media and the left like to make us the bad guys.

      • avatar

        Trolls are people who post under different names. That would be you. What was incorrect, specifically, with what I said. American media quotes Vicente Fox all the time and all his baseless charges about how Mexicans are mistreated in this country. They have more rights here than in Mexico.

        • avatar

          Again, travel and become more culturally educated … wrong … there are all types of illegals…….I have seen illegals being used and abused here in restaurants and landscaping jobs…… you are really a troll … they have no rights here…..only when in front of the law otherwise they are worse than 10th citizens….

          • avatar

            I posted a series of quotes from Amnesty International on Mexico. “Impunity PERSISTED for human rights violations..” Check your dictionary for the definition of those big words that fail to register for you.