Mexico inhabits 125 million people and is today the world´s 11th largest economy, projected to become the 6th largest by 2050. Mexico is also the country with the highest number of free trade agreements in the world.
Mexico has long understood the need to diversify its position in global trade and reduce its dependence on the US as a major trading partner. One of the major ways Mexico is looking to accomplish this is increased trade with the European Union (EU). The EU is Mexico´s third largest trading partner after the US and China and a renewed EU-Mexico trade agreement is currently being negotiated. Recently Mexico´s deputy minister for foreign trade further emphasised the importance of this negotiation:
"It's paramount. Right now there's no other issue, no other negotiation on top of the trade agenda for Mexico but this one" / Juan Carlos Baker, Deputy Minister for Foreign Trade
The EU and Mexico´s current trade agreement goes back to 2000 and the discussions on updates began 2016. As part of the negotiations, the Swedish EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström visited Mexico in early May. Business Sweden met with the commissioner during her visit to learn more about the upcoming renewed trade agreement. EU´s intentions to improve the trade agreement were made clear, not the least during a panel together with the Mexican Minister of Finance, when Cecilia Malmström stated:
"When others close the door to Mexico, the door between Mexico and the European Union will always be open".
According to Reuters, the EU has said in the new agreements it seeks to include public tenders, trade in energy products and raw materials, broader protection of intellectual property, more flexible rules on what products can benefit from lower customs tariffs and greater benefits for smaller companies. In addition, it could also lead to more liberalized trade in meat, dairy products, cereals and certain fruits and vegetables.
Another example of the willingness to increase trade and collaboration between the EU and Mexico is the Low Carbon Business Action in Mexico initiative. This is a project founded by the EU aiming to contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions in Mexico. European companies are matched with potential Mexican business partners and the project (hence, the EU) finances the flights and the accommodation for the European companies to visit Mexico. Business Sweden has actively mapped and encouraged Swedish companies with environmentally friendly solutions to consider the opportunities the project entails.
In times when the highest political attention is directed towards improving trade agreements and increasing opportunities between EU and Mexico, Business Sweden welcomes all Swedish companies to connect with us to discuss the specific opportunities in their respective sectors in Mexico.