(KFYI News) – It will soon be easier for businesses in Arizona and the Mexican state of Sonora to work together and trade products or services.

The Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (THCC) is in the process of putting together a business resource guide that will promote trade between the two states.

Mexico is already Arizona's #1 foreign trading partner.  The THCC says in 2012, Mexico exported $6.8 billion worth of products to Arizona, and our state's exports to Mexico totaled $6.2 billion.  It also says Sonora's middle class is among the fastest growing in all of Mexico, thanks in part to a doubling of production predicted for this year at Ford Motor Company's assembly plant in the Sonoran capital of Hermosillo.

"We need to let people know, in no uncertain terms, that there is unbelievable opportunity in Mexico-Arizona trade," said Mesa mayor Scott Smith, who was at the announcement at the Arizona Commerce Authority office in downtown Phoenix.

"For too long, businesses in Arizona and Sonora have known too little about each other," added Tucson mayor Jonathan Rothschild.  "Potentially lucrative markets and business partnerships have gone unexplored."

Rothschild said Arizona and Sonora are natural trading partners due to their common border.  "The border at Nogales is no barrier to business activities, but a lack of information is," he said.

The guide is expected to be released this spring. 

For information on being included in the guide, visit www.azstarnet.com/b2bform .

PHOTO: Tucson mayor Jonathan Rothschild talks to reporters at the announcement of the business resource guide.  Behind him are Phoenix mayor Greg Stanton (right) and Mesa mayor Scott Smith.