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FCBF joins the Florida/Mexico Working Group, which hosted its first meeting this week, ahead of the implementation of the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

MIAMI, FL – On Tuesday, June 30, the Florida Customs Brokers & Forwarders Association participated in the first meeting of the Florida/Mexico Working Group**, a group created as a result of a letter of intent signed by the Florida Ports Council and the Mexican Coordination of Ports and Merchant Marine in November 2019. The parties to the LOI pledged to create a working group of maritime commerce experts from Mexico and Florida to increase maritime trade between the two entities.

Elena Asturias, Chair of FCBF Education Committee

“Trade compliance, regulatory transparency, and overall process enhancement are key for goods to flow smoothly between Mexico and Florida. We are proud to be a part of this initiative to increase growth in bilateral maritime trade, and look forward to a productive collaboration with our counterparts in Mexico to lay the framework necessary for this to happen,” said Elena Asturias, FCBF Board Member. Ms. Asturias is the lead for the regulatory process review for the working group.

After a delegation from Florida met with Mexican officials and agencies last summer, Mexico sent its representatives from the Coordinadora de Puertos to Miami to sign the Letter of Intent in November.

“The establishment of the working group, proposed in the Letter of Intent signed by the Merchant Marine and the Florida Ports Council last November, is an example of the commitment and interest of both parties to make this relationship an axis of trade and investment between Mexico and the United States,” said Jonathan Chait Auerbach, the Consul General of Mexico in Miami. “The selection of the participants in the working group integrally represents the commercial potential between Mexico and Florida. Undoubtedly, taking advantage of the existing maritime border between both entities will bring with it an important benefit to the well-being of the people of both countries, and particularly in Mexico, the south-southeast region of the country.”

The working group begins its duties amidst the implementation of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, a new free trade agreement between these countries replacing NAFTA.

Working Group members include: 

  • Alice Ancona, Senior Vice President & COO of the World Trade Center – Miami; 
  • Elena Asturias, Licensed Customs Broker and Chair of the FCBF Education Committee;
  • Carlos Buqueras, Executive Director of Port Manatee; 
  • Alberto Cabrera, Director of Cruise and Cargo Development at JAXPORT; 
  • Alex King, Operations Manager of the Port of Panama City;  
  • Juan Kuryla, Port Director & CEO of PortMiami;
  • Alberto Azcona Gallardo, Deputy Director General of Priority Maritime Port Projects of the SCT; 
  • Juan Díaz Mazadiego, General Director of Commercial Facilitation and Foreign Trade of the Ministry of Economy; 
  • Leonardo Gómez Vargas, General Director of the National Association of Private Transport (ANTP); 
  • Felipe de Jesús Peña Dueñas, President of the Transportation Commission of the Confederation of Industrial Chambers of the United Mexican States (CONCAMIN); 
  • Fernandez Perroni, General Director of the Merchant Marine of the SCT;
  • Gerardo Tajonar Castro, President of the National Association of Importers and Exporters of the Mexican Republic (ANIERM); and,
  • Karina Venizelos Toledo, Central Administrator of Customs Services and International Affairs of the SAT.


About Florida Customs Brokers & Forwarders Association (FCBF)

The Florida Customs Brokers & Forwarders Association (FCBF) is Florida’s leading trade association for import and export professionals. Providing a unified voice for Florida trade, FCBF convenes industry leaders and agency officials to collaborate and gain from each other’s experience. The association seeks to advance the international trade industry through public-policy advocacy and education. Through actionable training and thought leadership, FCBF is propelling the industry forward to foster both economic growth and increased credibility. 

For more information on the Florida Customs Brokers & Forwarders Association, visit or call +1.305.499.9490.For press inquiries, contact Megan Conyers, Executive Vice President, at

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