Mexico Easing U.S. Poultry Ban Shows Ebbing Threat of Flu

March 25, 2015

Bloomberg Business, 3/24/2015

mexico-usa-flag-montageMexico’s move to start allowing some imports of American chicken and turkey from states with commercial bird-flu cases signals that the disease’s threat to U.S. poultry exports is starting to subside.

Mexico will accept shipments of some poultry from the states if the products are destined for further domestic processing, according to an update Tuesday on the website for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service. Other nations may follow suit, according to Farha Aslam, a New York-based analyst for Stephens Inc.

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Infographic: World Bank Index Challenges Perceptions of Mexico’s Most Business-Friendly Cities

March 25, 2015

taxes accounting business3/25/2015 Nearshore Americas

The World Bank’s ranking of the easiest and most difficult cities to do business in Mexico may come as a surprise to investors.

The nation’s capital, Mexico City, is the most difficult place to do business, while the relatively unheralded western city of Colima is the easiest, according to the latest Doing Business index. There is further bad news for more of Mexico’s most mature markets: the World Bank rates Guadalajara, widely known as “Mexico’s Silicon Valley,” as the eighth most difficult place to do business, while Monterrey, which is often described as the nation’s business capital, is only ranked the 16th easiest city to do business in.

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Mexico’s Baja Farmworkers Strike for Better Conditions

March 24, 2015

By Omar Millan, Washington Post, 3/24/2015

Migrant farmworkersSAN QUINTIN, Mexico — Workers at large, export-oriented farms in the Mexican border state of Baja California have led a week of violent protests over low pay, abuses and poor conditions, threatening a harvest that supplies millions of dollars worth of tomatoes, strawberries and other crops to the United States.

Burning tires and tossing rocks at vehicles, hundreds of farmworkers have blocked Baja’s main north-south highway on and off, and as many as 50,000 are believed to be on strike statewide as of Tuesday.

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GM to make next-generation Chevrolet Cruze in Mexico

March 24, 2015

03/23/15 Reuters

iStock_000008876270MediumGeneral Motors Co (GM.N) will build its next-generation Chevrolet Cruze compact in Mexico, the company said on Monday, as automakers look to expand in the Latin American nation to take advantage of low labor costs and free trade agreements. GM will invest $350 million to produce the Cruze at its plant in Coahuila, as part of the $5 billion investment in its Mexican plants announced last year. GM will continue manufacturing the model in Lordstown, Ohio. GM so far has identified only three plants that will make the next-generation Cruze, including in China.

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U.S. Trade Commission Upholds Sugar Pact With Mexico

March 20, 2015

By Anthony Harrup, Wall Street Journal, 3/19/2015

mexico-usa-flag-montageMEXICO CITY—The U.S. International Trade Commission voted unanimously Thursday to uphold an agreement that suspended duties on sugar imports from Mexico, a decision that Mexico’s Economy Ministry welcomed as positive for Mexican producers.

The USITC determined that December’s suspension agreements between the Department of Commerce and the Mexican government and sugar industry eliminated the injurious effect of imports on the U.S. domestic industry.

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Why Auto Makers Are Building New Factories in Mexico, not the U.S.

March 20, 2015

By Dudley Althaus and William Boston, Wall Street Journal, 3/17/2015

Audi-Q5CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.—A barren patch in the rugged hills along the Tennessee River is a sign of how Mexico has accelerated past the U.S. South in the global competition for auto investment.

The tract of cleared woodland lies alongside a factory Volkswagen AG set out to build in 2008. VW took an option on the adjacent 800 acres as a place where its Audi unit might build a North American plant someday.

But four years later, when Audi decided to move global production of its Q5 SUV to North America, the prize went to Mexico. Audi now is finishing a $1.3 billion factory in a gritty south-central Mexico town called San Jose Chiapa. The plant’s massive buildings rise like supertankers from dun-colored fields where families scrape by raising corn and beans.

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Mexican Vendors Bypass Banks With Mobile Applications

March 13, 2015

03/12/15 Bloomberg 

shutterstock_77317735In Mexico City, known for its sprawling street markets, consumers are shunning cash and opting for credit cards they swipe on merchants’ smartphones to pay for everything from shoes to tacos. “People will always ask, ‘do you take cards?’, and if you do, they’ll go ‘I want this, I want that,’” said Jorge Preciado, who promotes and recruits vendors to sell their wares in markets across Mexico, such as Bazar Condesa. “Cash will always circulate, but paying with a card is going to become the norm,” he said in a phone interview. About 29 million people, or more than half of Mexico’s workforce, operate in a gray economy that’s neither taxed or regulated.

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