Mexico’s economy to grow nearly 4 pct in 2014, report says

December 11, 2013

Global Post, 12/9/2013

drawing bar chartMexico’s economy will rebound in 2014 and grow 3.9 percent, compared to the 1.2 percent growth registered in 2013, insurer Credito y Caucion said in a report released Monday. “Mexico will be the exception in a changing pattern of growth in which the advanced markets will grow more while the emerging (markets) will continue leveling off” in 2014, Credito y Caucion said.

The company is a unit of Grupo Atradius, which operates in 45 countries. Mexico’s economy will rebound because of “its unique relationship with the United States,” the destination for nearly 80 percent of Mexican exports, Credito y Caucion said.

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North American Competitiveness: The San Diego Agenda

November 26, 2013

energy- oil pumps 2By Laura Dawson, Christopher Sands, and Duncan Wood

The San Diego Agenda came out of the North American Competitiveness and Innovation Conference (NACIC) held in San Diego October 27-29, 2013 where Canadian Trade Minister Ed Fast, Mexican Economy Secretary Ildefonso Guajardo and U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker met to discuss “three countries, two borders, one economy.” In this publication, Duncan Wood, Chris Sands and Laura Dawson argue that North American economic integration must be deepened in order to compete more effectively globally.
Read the full publication here.

Mexico Economic Bounce Aids Leader’s Overhaul Effort

November 22, 2013

The Wall Street Journal, 11/21/2013.

drawing bar chartThe struggling Mexican economy bounced back in the third quarter after a decline in the previous three months, taking some pressure off President Enrique Peña Nieto as he tries to improve the country’s competitiveness through ambitious overhauls.

The government’s statistics institute said economic output grew 0.8% seasonally adjusted from the second quarter, which translates into a 3.4% annualized growth rate.

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Mexican peso at crossroads between reform rally, Fed taper

July 19, 2013

financeReuters, 7/18/2013

For those who like volatility, there’s money to be made on the Mexican peso. It could rally on the hopes of a more robust future for Latin America’s second-biggest economy. Or it might get hammered by U.S. Federal Reserve policy moves. Maybe both will happen in the next six months.

While other regional economies are suffering from China’s slowing demand for commodities, Mexico is humming along. Factory exports to the United States are seen picking up and a series of economic reforms has investors seeing a brighter future.

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Why Mexico Will Be Latin America’s Tech Leader

June 25, 2013

typing on computer keyboardABC News/Univision, 6/25/2013

A global race is on to create the next Silicon Valley, and Latin America is rapidly embracing technology and innovation as it vies to be the epicenter of the next tech boom. The stakes aren’t trivial. It’s clear that the countries that can develop new ideas and technology will be the economic winners of the 21st century. That’s why the Brazilian government, for instance, recently launched Startup Brazil, a business accelerator that aims to attract local and foreign talent to build tech companies in Brazil.

The program, which will provide entrepreneurs with up to $100,000 in grant money as well as office space and access to investors, is modeled after Startup Chile, the pioneering business accelerator launched by the Chilean government a few years ago. Chile was the first Latin American country to focus on attracting startups and developing an ecosystem of innovators. Other countries in the region, like Colombia and Peru, have followed their lead.

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How immigration reform might also spur young Americans to study math, science

June 10, 2013

shutterstock_49761472The Christian Science Monitor, 6/8/2013

Tucked into immigration reform legislation in both chambers of Congress are little-noticed measures that could pump hundreds of millions of dollars into cultivating a new generation of American students interested in science, technology, engineering, and math (or STEM). Such a move could help shore up what much of corporate America and many lawmakers see as a glaring deficiency in the nation’s long-term economic competitiveness.

The bills offer at least $200 million per year (but perhaps as much as $700 million, advocates say) by channeling fees from high-skilled visas into investments in STEM education and job training. Specifically, legislators would increase the fee that employers pay to sponsor high-skilled temporary workers (visas known as H-1Bs) and direct $1,000 of that bump toward a special “STEM fund.” The fund would also be supported by an additional $1,000 cost to employers looking to sponsor H-1B workers for permanent residence in the United States.

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US Chamber Study: Extortion on Rise in Mexico

May 30, 2013

mystery manAP, 5/30/2013

There has been a huge increase in the number of businesses reporting extortion attempts by drug cartels in Mexico, according to a survey by the American Chamber in Mexico. The survey of 541 members of the American group as well as the British and Japanese chambers of commerce in Mexico showed the percentage of firms reporting cartel extortions has doubled. Such problems were reported by 18 percent in 2012, but the number jumped to 36 percent this year even as reports of most of other types of crimes declined.

“Obviously that’s one of the ones that really jumped out when we were studying the graph, because almost all of the other tendencies were down,” Thomas Gillen, chairman of the AmCham Security Committee, said Wednesday. Companies reported fewer thefts of shipments or supplies and fewer threats or attacks on employees in the most recent survey. As for the rise in reported extortion cases, “People might be becoming more comfortable in reporting it, or criminals might be getting better at extorting businesses,” Gillen said.

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Op-ed: Immigration, Aging and America’s Competitive Edge

May 30, 2013

Michigan Elder Law CenterBy Michael Hodin, The Huffington Post, 5/29/2013

Unlike the unending political news of the scandals rocking the Obama Administration — IRS, AP, Benghazi, where there is a growing, universal consensus Inside the Beltway that something is, at best wrong and at worst rotten — the debate on immigration has become more of a Rorschach test than anything else. The discourse has become a bloated catch-all, and everyone with a Twitter feed or a New York Times column has been unable to resist giving their here’s-what-it’s-really-about interpretation. The debates over manicures, IQ tests, and gay rights offer some of the more colorful examples.

Perhaps the difference of immigration is that it is understood at its base as an “All-American” issue that has been with us since our founding and is as American as motherhood and apple pie. Immigration is also a solution to America’s aging population, which will give us a unique competitive advantage in the economic struggle among nations. Indeed, it is only because of immigration that the U.S. doesn’t find itself in the same economic conundrum as Japan, China, South Korea, and the European Union. These economic peers are finding it increasingly tricky to pay for their “seniors” as they age. With their birth-rates falling and longevity extending, the math no longer adds up.

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Op-ed: Immigration reform gets U.S. in on Mexico’s boom

April 18, 2013

shutterstock_101964346By Jason Marczak, CNN, 4/18/13

President Barack Obama will find that much has changed in Mexico when he arrives on May 2. Our neighbor to the South — and second-largest export market — has moved far ahead with reforms. As Congress crafts comprehensive immigration legislation, Democrats and Republicans must keep in mind that Mexico is changing rapidly, and policies crafted to reflect yesterday’s Mexico will not help the U.S. make the most of the potential of today’s and tomorrow’s Mexico.

Mexico’s future is bright, and tapping into this growth and economic prosperity is vital to U.S. competitiveness. But the U.S. needs immigration reform to build on its huge bilateral trade with Mexico — more than $1 billion in goods and services each day, or $45 million an hour.

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Mexico’s president tries to loosen country’s monopolies

April 12, 2013

Enrique PeñaNieto 2USA Today, 4/11/13

Jesús Briseño is a Mexican entrepreneur, brewing craft beers like pale ale, stout and a pilsner named for Jesús Malverde, the patron saint of smugglers and drug dealers. But often it’s not Mexico bars that sell his beer but U.S.-based outlets here like Wal-Mart and 7-Eleven.

The reason has to do with Mexico’s system of monopolies that are allowed to secure exclusive rights to major industries and products such as telecommunications, broadcasting, cement, even beer. Mexico’s two largest brewers use exclusivity contracts to prevent all products but their own from being sold in nearly all of Mexico’s bars and restaurants.

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