Electoral Reform/Tesla Chooses Monterrey  for Investment
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Electoral Reform/Tesla Chooses Monterrey for Investment

Photo by:   Gobierno de México
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Paloma Duran By Paloma Duran | Journalist and Industry Analyst - Tue, 02/28/2023 - 12:57

The US criticizes electoral reform. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador lashed out at the U.S. State Department, after stating it recognized Mexico's sovereignty. However, it spoke in favor of an independent electoral system with more resources - leading to a healthy democracy. "There is more democracy in Mexico than in the US. Instead of meddling in our affairs, they should worry about their problems.”

On Feb. 22 Mexico´s senate approved the reform with 72 votes in favor and 50 against.  According to the new law, the National Electoral Institute´s budget (INE) will be slashed as well as its workers´ salaries, the financing of local electoral offices and the training of polling station officials. Plan B also eliminates INE’s budgetary autonomy, lays off 84.6% of the personnel that work for the National Electoral Service (SPEN) and reduces sanctions for candidates who do not declare their campaign expenses.

Last weekend, hundreds of thousands of people gathered to protest against the government’s Plan B of the electoral reform. According to Mexico City’s government, around 90,000 people participated in Sunday's protest. Nevertheless, other media sources have reported that more than 500,000 people gathered at the Zocalo, Mexico City's main square.  

Tesla in Mexico. President López Obrador reported that, despite his initial refusal for the factory to be installed in Nuevo León, he accepted Tesla CEO Elon Musk's proposal. However, he stressed that it is a priority to avoid water shortages in the state. "There is already an agreement. They are going to invest in Mexico and the factory will be installed in Monterrey, in addition to a series of commitments to address the  water scarcity problem."

Global electric car manufacturer Tesla chose Mexico to build its Gigafactory, which will have an initial investment between US$800 million and US$1 billion. With this new deal, Mexico is moving closer to its goal of developing a strong and attractive lithium value chain. The Gigafactory will produce components for the company's current vehicle models. However, it could later develop new models at a lower cost compared to other car factories. 

Foreign Affairs Minister Marcelo Ebrard said that Tesla CEO Elon Musk visited three Mexican states to find the best location to build their new factory. In October, Musk visited Nuevo Leon and met with Governor Samuel García and US Ambassador to Mexico Ken Salazar to discuss plans and proyects. 

Foreign doctors. IMSS Director Zoé Robledo reported that, so far, there are 156 prospective medical specialists of different nationalities that want to work in Mexico. "We are going to guarantee the most remote communities have a right to health care, with facilities, specialists and free medicines."

López Obrador has been widely criticized for hiring foreign doctors to work in Mexico’s marginalized areas, so the government announced that it would create employment positions for Mexican doctors. Previously, López Obrador reported that the country had a deficit of 50,000 doctors, a problem exacerbated in rural areas as Mexican medical professionals seek to study and work in larger cities. The president said that, sometimes, Mexican doctors even refuse to move to rural areas. Meanwhile, medical and professional organizations in Mexico have claimed that López Obrador's initiative discriminates against Mexican doctors because they already compete in an oversaturated job market.


Photo by:   Gobierno de México

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