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Keyboard Shortcuts Close Available anywhere? Street-level violence also exacerbated this exodus since the Drug War triggered further possibilities for crime.
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There were roughly 6. Because of the large-scale violence, the Mexican government deployed thousands of troops to numerous cities. The initiative in Chihuahua was called Operativo Conjunto Chihuahua, a military strategy to secure the state against the cartels. Federal police also arrived to northern Mexican border cities, although their presence and effectiveness remain dubious. Statistics have varied wildly over the death toll from this drug war. When considering this level of carnage, numbers are only approximations due to the very few actual investigations into crimes by the Mexican government.
Although many people killed were involved in the drug trade, significant proportions killed were simply at the wrong place at the wrong time Herrera Robles The year saw the highest homicide rate at 3, Villagran Even U. Mexican government officials argued forcefully against these claims and fervently asserted that the violence was narcoviolencia perpetrated by criminals against other criminals and not innocent people Wright Yet, everyday people fell victims to extortion, random and targeted kidnappings and street-level violence. Local business people were some of the hardest hit victims.
For some, the crumbling economy compounded the already dangerous conditions that people were living in during the Mexican Drug War period. The military presence and makeshift military checkpoints also steered people away from everyday shopping and living. However, the Mexican government claimed that the economy would shrink 2. Since foreign investors were leery of investing in Mexico, and the U.
Remaining businesses were forced to increase their prices since they had less business and a greater loss of revenue. Acquiring goods and services was more limited than before for clients. Growing evidence suggests that the increased violence in Mexico is having a damaging impact on the foreign investment sector, since violence is frightening off investors in places once considered safe havens for foreign multinationals. An analysis of business ventures in Colombia from to found that new ventures were less likely to survive in the context of high violence, meaning that greater levels of violence are associated with lower levels of employment and economic productivity over the long-term, curtailing the creation of new employment and long-term investments Hiatt and Sine On the U.
Due to the U. These are not disenfranchised economic refugees, but economic refugees with wealth who drive BMWs and buy half a million dollar homes in cities like El Paso. In San Antonio, Texas, for instance, private jet flights between the U. Many people commuted to Mexico each month, week or even daily to check on their businesses.
This cross-border business movement made business associations like La Red popular because entrepreneurs sought support groups that shared their values. In San Antonio, the Mexican Entrepreneurs Association, that was founded 15 years ago, grew exponentially from a few members to Sheridan Similarly, La Red in El Paso grew quickly in membership and notoriety. La Red welcomed individuals who shared similar characteristics and experiences, and offered members opportunities to establish networks and to grow as entrepreneurs.
Moreover, La Red sought to provide legal advice to people looking to invest in new businesses in the United States, to deal with immigration agencies, and to decrease the anti-Mexican sentiment that is spreading throughout the U. La Red is composed of approximately 80 members who convene every other Thursday to hold a meeting in regards to the operation of their organization. Data collection occurred at one of regularly scheduled breakfast meetings where members gather. The purpose of the study was shared with the members at this point.
This preliminary visit was followed up with a second visit. On the survey collection day, there were 58 members present December 15, Before distributing the surveys, informed consent form was read aloud which included the description of the study, confidentiality issues, benefits, risks and the voluntary nature of their participation.
We then answered any questions that the members had before administering the surveys and exiting the room while they completed the surveys. The president of La Red and one of the members helped distribute the surveys and collect them after they were completed.
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Of the surveys that were distributed to all 58 members, only 35 members completed the survey. A mix of multiple choice questions and open-ended questions were used. The surveys were completed anonymously and each person took approximately 20 to 30 minutes to complete them. Surveys were offered in English and Spanish, although all members preferred filling out Spanish surveys. In order to develop a typology, we asked re-established entrepreneurs whether they had relocated their business to the United States or started a new business after they decided to live in the United States.
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As for transnational entrepreneurs, we asked them whether they had maintained their business in Mexico or put another person in charge. Displaced entrepreneurs were asked if they had closed or sold their business. The average age of respondents was 50 years old, which is expected given that the survey represents established business owners. These levels of educational attainment are not only high according to U.
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Several La Red members transitioned their businesses and families to El Paso. Others moved to the U. At the U. Thus, we expected that the out-migration of Mexican entrepreneurs and re-establishment of their businesses would be facilitated by their U. Among those who closed their businesses in Mexico and relocated them in the U. Thus, citizenship does not appear to be a factor determining migratory move of this group of entrepreneurs. Thus, having U. Figure 1. Nationality by entrepreneur category. Source: authors.
Transnational entrepreneurs, however, deviate from the other groups. In particular, transnational entrepreneurs noted the primary reason for wanting to leave Mexico as insecurity, insecurity and corruption, attempt and extortion and to a lesser extent others noted economic progress, investment, and better opportunities.
In contrast, all of the displaced entrepreneurs that closed their businesses in Mexico and moved to the U. Figure 2. The responses presented in Table 1 highlight the negative border externalities such as violence and insecurity, labor market displacement, and the interlocking of both of these factors that pushed the Mexican entrepreneurs out of their sending community.