Ross D. Franklin/AP

Governor Jan Brewer is headed off to Europe this week in hopes of boosting trade. Arizona Public Radio’s Howard Fischer reports.

Peter O'Dowd / KJZZ

Trade between the United States and Mexico reached half a trillion dollars in 2011. Cross-border commerce is growing despite escalating drug violence in Mexico.

The final tally came out to $500 billion in goods and services traded between the two countries, according to a paper by the Mexico Institute at the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars and Arizona State University's North American Center for Transborder Studies.