Canadian Chamber of Commerce Asks for CertaintyBy Sofía Hanna | Tue, 11/17/2020 - 18:19
The Chamber of Commerce of Canada in Mexico (CANCHAM) asked Mexico to be a reliable and serious business partner to attract more investments that can benefit from USMCA, making emphasis on the commercial energy sector, which should start focusing on being sustainable, efficient and conscious of its emissions.
On a press release, the chamber stated it believes Mexico has to seize the opportunity brought by the nearshoring trend, which could attract more investments from Asia to North America. According to a Forbes article, part of what was mentioned in this release is that Mexico has an opportunity to be part of this growth, but a change in the way Mexico does business is necessary.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic, industries including mining, pharma, technology and automotive have attracted large investments from Canadian companies, as mentioned in an MBN article. Canadian companies invested US$3.4 billion in the first six months of this year, which represents 19 percent of the total foreign investment in the country, reported Mexico News Daily. Moreover, due to its own advantages and external factors like the trade war between the US and China, Mexico is becoming more attractive as an investment destination for many countries, one of them being China, says Joaquin Barrera Alonzo, Director of Fixed Income and Investment at SURA Investment Management.
However, CANCHAM raised the issue that Mexico has to face these new opportunities with a modern and reliable stance. "Mexico cannot discriminate foreign investors over national ones. It cannot take actions that result in disguised expropriation of investors' actions while giving advantages to national companies like PEMEX and CFE," reports Forbes. CANCHAM’s release also states that although Chapter 8 of USMCA recognizes the sovereignty of member parties over their natural resources and right to reform their constitution, Mexico cannot change its laws in direct contradiction to what is stated in international agreements previously signed, including USMCA and the CPTPP.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has made several statements on how the previous administration did the country’s public sectors wrong, which have derived in numerous policies directed to strengthening PEMEX and CFE. SENER has even presented an initiative to prevent further testing of renewable project to be connected to the grid but this was refuted by the courts following amparos presented by several companies.
Following the US elections, it is likely that Joe Biden will try to bring more clean energy to US, enforcing also the clean energy mandates established in USMCA, which Mexico is not ready for. This was another point addressed by CANCHAM and one that had already been brought up by US legislators who addressed a letter to President Donald Trump asking for support in dealing with Mexico’s changes in its energy policies, which affect US energy companies’ interests. The way forward to a cleaner energy industry, according to CANCHAM
According to CANCHAM, Mexico’s National Development Plan bets on a sustainable, efficient, sovereign and low-emissions energy sector. The only way for that to become a reality is through foreign investment, says the chamber.