El Paso, Texas might not look like much on a national map to American citizens. It’s not a place that makes the news very often, and it’s also kind of hard to spot, given that it’s right on the border with another country, that being Mexico. Anyone looking at the Wikipedia or United States Census data for the city also might not be impressed with the population size. However, that’s largely because a lot of the metropolitan area population is actually on the other side of the Rio Grande, in the Mexican city of Juarez.
There are several points of intersection between the two cities, but they are all counted together as one joint border crossing. Together, they cumulatively rank as the highest volume border crossing in the world in terms of foot traffic, individual drivers and passengers, and total number of vehicles. A large part of this is due to the manufacturing and industrial capacity on the Mexican side of the border.
Current Juarez is almost like what Detroit used to be for the United States in its power to make things. So, a lot of American companies take advantage of this, getting things built or repaired in Juarez and then distributed within the United States from El Paso. As Texas is a very central state, shipping coming out of that state reaches places like California, Washington state, Florida, Illinois, and New York all at roughly the same speed, and that holds true if it’s going by air, interstate, or rail. All of these are viable shipping opportunities coming in and out of Texas, and El Paso has all these connections.
The labor workforces in Juarez are cheaper than American workers, but also just as skilled, making them a valuable asset.