Largest bi-national business meeting held in Mexico City

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Last week, a large binational meeting between representatives of Mexico and the United States was held in Mexico City, where economic policy, opportunities and challenges were discussed.

The second annual meeting, known as the United States-Mexico High-Level Economic Dialogue, was held in Mexico City on September 12, 2022.

At this year’s meeting, several delegates and trade experts from Laredo and Nuevo Laredo were present, but also others such as US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo and various State Department and Security were present at the meeting.

Gerald “Gerry” Schwebel, executive vice president of IBC Bank who sits on the Mexico-American Economic Council, described the HLED meeting as one of the most important between Mexican and American officials and private companies. They are trying to find new ways to trade better for their local regions.

“These discussions have focused on our binational relationship of our sharing opportunities and our businesses, and also border security and rebuilding and also how we can try to bring some of the semiconductor businesses back to America. of the North and not be too dependent on China,” says Schwebel. “These opportunities have been discussed with major private companies involved in the semiconductor industry.”

According to Schwebel, now is a good time to engage in discussions with these companies, as recent policy has made it easier for these companies to do business in the United States under the CHIPS for America Act & FABS Act, which aims to strengthen domestic semiconductor manufacturing.

Also present at the meeting was Jorge Vinals, the current general manager of Clúster Logístico y de Cadenas de Suministro en Tamaulipas, or the logistics and supply chain cluster of Tamaulipas. He tried to underline and highlight the importance of Tamaulipas with regard to frontier trade and the frontier economy. Vinals says the meeting was a great opportunity to dialogue about some of the best opportunities the Tamaulipas-Texas border has for increasing economic output for both nations.

Glafiro Montemayor, one of the main promoters and one of the sponsors of the upcoming construction of the 4/5 Bridge on the Mexican side, was also present and confirmed the need for the construction of the bridge. Schwebel says California’s infrastructure projects in Brownsville were the topics discussed, as the “Mexican government made sure the 4/5 Bridge was a top priority bridge” for their government.

Just as many potential opportunities were discussed, Schwebel says several challenges also exist and were addressed during the meeting to ensure they are addressed in the best way possible.

“One of the main things that we recommended is to respect the United States-Mexico-Canada trade agreement, because that is above all else,” Schwebel said.

The trade expert says all challenges can be met as long as there is “good dialogue”. He said that apart from any economic or political challenges, the continuation of talks and meetings – like those held in Mexico City – will help to sustain the partnership between the two countries.

During the meeting, there was also a private sector forum where supply chain disruption, border infrastructure issues and security were all discussed.

The event occurred in the same week that a potential national rail strike could have begun, leaving many dependents of the rail industry dependent on other forms of transport for the movement of their goods and products. This continued talks on how to improve trade as well.

The importance of proximity opportunities for semiconductors with members of the private sector was also mentioned. For Schwebel, relying more on Mexico than on China is key to ensuring another major increase in economic ties between the two countries and also to improving the economic output of the border.

jorge.vela@lmtonline.com

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