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PHOENIX -- When the recession hit Arizona a few years ago, it was only a matter of time before it reached the small border towns.

"Then it hit us very hard and it took us longer to come out of it," said Nogales Vice-Mayor Nubar Hanessian. He was at the State Capitol on Thursday as Phoenix and the state announced that they plan to open a trade office in Mexico City during the summer.

Hanessian's community will benefit greatly from increased trade opportunities. Nogales is a major trade hub on the border and sits along Interstate 19, which continues south into Mexico as Mexico Federal Highway 15.

"Eighty percent of our economy (is based on) Mexican citizens. You look at property being sold in Nogales and Tucson and a lot of those properties are being sold to people from Mexico," he said.

Jim Cross, Reporter

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