Commerce in Mexico could enter a new phase of prosperity

The government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, which began functions on December 1, has outlined its commercial policy under three axes: innovation, inclusion, and diversification, but has offered few details about it

Mexico could enter a new phase of prosperity. Photo: Debate
Mexico could enter a new phase of prosperity. Photo: Debate

The commerce of Mexico, one of the economic pillars of the country, can enter a new phase of prosperity, but it will depend on the correct execution of the precepts that the new government has proposed to shake its structure, experts said.

The government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, which began operations on December 1, has outlined its commercial policy under three axes: innovation, inclusion, and diversification, but has offered few details in this regard.

Despite being an open economy and with a dozen commercial agreements, Mexico is highly dependent on its trade with the United States, its neighbor, and principal business partner in the renewed North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), in force since 1994.

The general director of the Mexican Business Council for Foreign Trade, Investment and Technology (Comce), Fernando Ruiz, said that the private sector of the country is seeking with the new government ways to stimulate and expand the commercial scheme to adapt the country to current needs.

The initial route aims to innovate in the capacities of internal production, to then better exploit the conditions abroad, taking into account that in 2018 Mexican exports reached a record of 450,000 million dollars, largely manufactures.

"We have to take advantage of this bonus that gives us the export of manufactures to grow the country, to have a greater growth of small and medium enterprises, which can be suppliers of large export companies, and we have to see what they lack for this, "the expert told Xinhua.

"We must replace imports in an efficient and competitive way, producing in Mexico these raw materials, parts, and pieces that we import today, there is a change in the model and this requires more commercial intelligence," he added.

The director of the Institute for Industrial Development and Economic Growth, José Luis de la Cruz, recommended a "new productive matrix" that generates more export companies.

"All the competitive marketing of Mexico at a global level is going to the United States, the productive system is not designed to go to other regions of the world, we do not have good ports of embarkation, for example"

"Electronic commerce could be one of the mechanisms, but this should force Mexico to change its structure of what it can offer the world beyond what it already offers the United States, and today we are not prepared," he added.

De la Cruz and Ruiz agree that Mexico needs to carry out an in-depth analysis industry by industry, product by product, to determine exactly where the "most accurate shots" of investment and trade are located.

José Manuel López, president of the Confederation of National Chambers of Commerce, Services and Tourism (Concanaco-Servytur), said that the new NAFTA, now called the Treaty Mexico, the United States, Canada (T-MEC), can also pay in the strategy of the new government.

"The implementation of the T-MEC will have positive effects on the national economy, which will generate beneficial results for the generation of jobs, the growth of domestic and foreign investments, and the increase of national exports to these countries," he said. the leader.

"The T-MEC and other commercial treaties that Mexico has with other countries will allow the growth of Foreign Direct Investment, to establish plants in our country and take advantage of Mexico's participation in the international economy within the framework of these agreements," he added.

The T-MEC was signed by the leaders of the three countries on November 30, after a modernization process that began in August 2017, but has yet to be ratified by the legislatures to become effective.

To accelerate the commercial activity, the Concanaco-Servytur looks for ways to promote a "more slender" customs code, which facilitates the procedures of the sector, said José Manuel López.

However, the president of the body recalled that it is imperative for the country to strengthen the rule of law, its constant "Achilles heel" (weakness) to attract more investment to the country, which at the same time raise their productive capacities.

"Expectations of growth will only be reached if important changes are made that lead the country, as a whole, to raise its levels of competitiveness"

"Mexico's competitiveness is not only determined by the products we make or the arrival of new factories but to attract, encourage and grow investments, we need to insist on the fight against corruption and fight against impunity, its twin sister," he added.

López Obrador, of the National Regeneration Movement, has proposed combating corruption to allocate those resources to productive projects.

According to business estimates, corruption in Mexico costs between 2 and 10 percent of the Gross Domestic Product.

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