Chihuahua Launches New Investment PlatformBy Alicia Arizpe | Wed, 08/12/2020 - 11:56
Public and private entities in Chihuahua joined forces to attract more investment to the state through the new program Chihuahua City Invest. The initiative brings together efforts from diverse manufacturing sectors, ranging from mining to aerospace, to help attract investment to sectors heavily hit by the COVID-19 outbreak.
Representatives from FEMIA joined their peers from several industries and other business developers in the announcement of a new strategy to attract investment to the city. This project was developed alongside the local government to institutionalize support programs and centralize economic development strategies that benefit the state’s manufacturing sector, which was greatly hurt by the COVID-19 outbreak. The pandemic led many sectors to halt their operations to contain the spread of the virus, leading the state’s industrial activity to hit its lowest point in 25 years during April and May. As the sector reopens and prepares for the new normal, this new investment strategy is expected to be “a breath of fresh air,” said Maru Campos Galván, Major of Chihuahua.
With six OEMs and over 40 aerospace suppliers, Chihuahua ranks among Mexico’s top states in aerospace manufacturing. Chihuahua began manufacturing harnesses but has now spread its capabilities to interiors, aerostructures, composites, aero parts and heat and chemical treatments, among many others, thanks to numerous advantages such as its ideal location. Before the outbreak, the industry employed over 17,000 workers in the state and was expected to continue growing thanks to the strong aircraft backlog. However, the COVID-19 pandemic doused these expectations. Outbreaks across the world led many countries to temporarily close manufacturing plants, disrupting global supply chains for many manufacturing industries. The aerospace sector suffered another heavy blow as airlines cancelled or deferred orders for new airplanes, which led OEMs to cancel orders throughout their entire supply chain. While the full impact of the outbreak on the aerospace industry is yet to be determined, aerospace demand in Mexico has shrank between 25-45 percent, according to FEMIA.
Even during these troubled times, Chihuahua seems to be an attractive investment destination for the aerospace industry. During the past month, French engine giant Safran and aerospace supply chain manager Incora announced new plants in the state. Chihuahua Investment City aims to increase the city’s competitiveness and make it more attractive to national and foreign investment.