Mexican Foreign Relations Secretary Patricia Espinosa and Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird met here and reiterated their governments' commitment to strengthening bilateral relations.

The officials, who met on Monday, stressed the importance of continuing to expand cooperation in the areas of labor mobility, fighting transnational criminal groups, higher education, technology and science, the Mexican Foreign Relations Secretariat said in a statement.

Baird was on his first visit to Mexico since being named to the post by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in May.

Espinosa and Baird discussed the strong results in bilateral tourism, trade and investment, especially in strategically important sectors, such as aviation, the secretariat said.

The officials agreed to expand efforts to boost the competitiveness of North America, the Foreign Relations Secretariat said.

Mexico, Canada and the United States have been partners in the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, since 1994.

Trade between Mexico and Canada has risen from $2.74 billion in 1993 to $7.78 billion in 2010, the Mexican Economy Secretariat said.

Canada has invested more than $10 billion in Mexico since 1999, and over 1.4 million Canadian tourists visited Mexico last year, a figure that was up 19 percent from 2009.

Espinosa and Baird agreed to stay in close touch ahead of the next G-20 meeting and Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, or APEC, forum, which will be attended by Mexican President Felipe Calderon and Harper, the secretariat said.