Ildefonso Guajardo
Ministry of Economy

New Projects and More Competition

Tue, 09/01/2015 - 17:42

In April 2015, the federal government made two major announcements. The first one was delivered on the 15th in the Adolfo López Mateos Hall at the presedential residence of Los Pinos, where Toyota disclosed the construction details of a new manufacturing plant in Celaya. At the event, the Minister of Economy, Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal, stated that after establishing its first plant in Baja California in 2004, Toyota had finally made the decision to participate more actively in the Mexican industry. The total investment for this facility will be US$1 billion and this will be Toyota’s third manufacturing center in Mexico after its plants in Tijuana and Salamanca. Apart from its obvious significance in terms of investment and employment, its most relevant implications will be in terms of technology and innovation. The Minister of Economy informed about the Toyota New Global Architecture program which intends to elevate the company’s global standards of production and, moreover that Mexico will be one of the first countries to receive this technology, along with China.

In Guajardo’s opinion, this venture is strengthening the bonds with Japan, especially since the economic agreement established ten years ago. “Our relationship with Japan goes back almost 400 years and since we built this arrangement, our bilateral commerce has grown more than 70% with a commercial relationship of almost US$20 billion in 2014. In these last ten years, the Japanese automotive production in Mexico has escalated by 325%, manufacturing 35% of the total new vehicles in the country and 45% of the exported units.”

Two days later, the government held a second press conference at Los Pinos, where Ford announced the construction of two new facilities in the country, one in Chihuahua and another in Guanajuato, as well as the expansion of its existing engine plant in Chihuahua. Even though Mexico is now an international hub for the automotive industry, Ford was the first company to establish in 1925. This has allowed it to help the entire sector grow, supporting the industry’s development at all stages. Once again, Ildefonso Guajardo took the floor of the López Mateos Hall, congratulating Ford and Toyota for both of these projects. “Today, we are closing a perfect week for the Mexican automotive industry, receiving more than US$3.5 billion in foreign investments that will strengthen various different segments of the automotive sector.”

At the moment, Ford produces around 500,000 vehicles for the national and international market, breaking records in local distribution with the Ford Fusion, which is the most exported model in the country. Additionally, the company has four manufacturing plants in Mexico, one of which exports more than 500,000 engines. With its new facilities in Guanajuato, Ford will manufacture 800,000 transmissions annually. Meanwhile, it will have an increased production of engines in Chihuahua of one million units, transforming this facility into the biggest engine plant in the country, and globally one of the most important plants for Ford. The three projects will receive a total investment of US$2.5 billion and will generate close to 3,800 jobs. “This will help to develop the entire Bajio region, it will promote the growth of the national auto part industry, and it will strengthen our bonds with the three main US automotive companies. After this week, there will be no question that the industry is in the most important process of evolution in Mexico. The country is a safe destination for every automotive company and, after 90 years, Ford has also been a standard for the growth of the Mexican industry,” concludes Guajardo.