Mexico is looking to infuse investments from Qatar for large-scale development projects and to strengthen economic partnerships between both nations, Deputy Minister of Finance and Public Credit Gabriel Yorio Gonzalez has said.
Gonzalez was in Qatar recently as part of a government delegation from Mexico that is exploring co-operation opportunities in several markets in the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) and its investment climates.
“We can increase our presence and invest more in the GCC region. But, at the same time, we would like to see more Qatari firms in Mexico...probably we will need to work more on increasing that knowledge so we can bring more firms to Mexico.
“We had some meetings with our counterparts in the Qatari government. And they are proposing to start increasing the interactions among the chambers and business associations in Mexico and Qatar,” Gonzalez told Gulf Times in an exclusive interview.
Citing Mexico’s focus on renewable energy and trade partnerships, Gonzalez said initiatives like the Sonora Plan and the inter-oceanic corridor offer attractive opportunities for Qatari investors to participate in the country’s growth.
Gonzalez said the Sonora Plan aims to capitalise on Mexico’s high-quality solar light and abundant solar energy potential. He said the government is building its largest solar park in Northern Mexico, including other aeolian plants in Oaxaca to harness the power of the wind.
“Mexico plans to construct multiple solar parks, with one nearing completion and plans for five additional parks. These initiatives will significantly contribute to the region’s electricity generation and offer power supply solutions to Baja California and Baja California Sur,” Gonzalez stated.
The deputy finance minister noted that the Sonora Plan also includes the relocation of the supply chain for lithium extraction, which is essential for batteries and electric vehicles.
“Some of the other opportunities that we have heard from our counterparts is that we would like to increase connectivity, for example, more flights from Mexico to Qatar, but also potentially to explore trade facilitation agreements, so we can increase our trade or commerce, including all the relations that we can build. Diversifying the economy is always good because you don’t depend only on one source.
“Also, transitioning towards more clean energy, sustainability, and environmental justice is important. It is important here as it is important in Mexico. And we have pursued an approach of a sustainable finance approach that we’re developing in Mexico to green our financial sector,” Gonzalez said.
On the inter-oceanic corridor of Mexico’s Isthmus of Tehuantepec, Gonzalez said the government is investing in an inter-oceanic train that goes from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean.
“This is a trade facilitation project. We want to provide an option for all the trade that comes from Asia to the east coast of the US and to provide industrial or manufacturing clusters to the region and the Central American region,” Gonzalez explained.
He said Mexico also aims to build desalination facilities in water-stressed areas north of the country. The plan offers Qatari investors an opportunity to contribute to water resource management and alleviate water scarcity issues, Gonzalez pointed out.
“One of the issues that we want to address in Mexico is to increase investments in water desalination, so we want to benefit from your expertise and the expertise of the region.
“Also, there are already firms in Arab countries that have enough skills to invest in Mexico and to have these investments in Mexican territory. And that’s one of the potential objectives that we can achieve on these kinds of visits,” he emphasised.
Gonzalez highlighted the significance of the trade agreement between Mexico, the US, and Canada or T-MEC. As a strategic partner within T-MEC, Gonzalez said Mexico offers a range of opportunities for Qatari businesses seeking to expand their presence in North America.
“Mexico has an extensive network of 15 free trade agreements, making the country a gateway to global markets. By establishing a presence in Mexico, Qatari firms would gain access not only to the vast North American market but also to Latin America, Europe, and Asia. Mexico’s strategic location as a trade and logistics hub provides Qatari businesses with opportunities to explore new avenues for growth and enhance their global reach,” Gonzalez added.
Mexico's Deputy Minister of Finance and Public Credit Gabriel Yorio Gonzalez. PICTURE: Shaji Kayamkulam