Will “ProMexico” change anything?

Preg_3Its purpose? Pretty straight forward: a) Promote Mexican exports on international markets b) Promote attraction of foreign investment to Mexico.

Will it work? Only time will tell, and you’ll be the judge. For the time being, most of the initiatives seem quite challenging if you ask me. One in particular called my attention:  

“Mexico will diversify the sectors at which foreign investment is aimed, promoting investment with a higher technological content”

Have you searched for public official information (on foreign investment) at any Government website? If you have, you understand the challenge:

a) You hardly find “actionable” data and statistics

b) Most of valuable information is only in Spanish

c) Lack of online services (e.g. online Fideicomiso permit requests through banks)

d) Broken links and “under construction” disclaimers are popular

e) And there is no single official website that gathers all the information a foreign investor buying property in Mexico needs.

Quick example: Have you ever wondered how many “restricted zone” fideicomisos have been incorporated in Mexico through time? (If you’re a foreign business development director for a large developer interested in investing in Mexico, you’d probably find this information useful, right?).  

It will take you a while before you realize you can probably find this data at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website. Once you find the website, it will take you another half hour and a dozen clicks only to find out this information is actually in Spanish only.

Oh, and did I mention you’ll only find the total number of Fideicomisos from 2000 to 2006? What happened before the year 2000? On top of this, there is no information break down by month, city, state or resort destination. No access to cities, states or even countries where foreign investment is coming from either (Yes, you’d need to go to the Ministry of the Economy website to search for this information, only to find out that it’s just not there).

Sure, this whole idea of transforming the promotion of foreign trade and investment in Mexico is a huge challenge, and it will take more than a few years before ProMexico can provide tangible results. But wouldn’t access to basic foreign investment information be a good start?

[Bonus: The IFAI – Federal Institute for Public Information Access – has a website where you can actually ask the Mexican Government for any public official information you might need. Earlier this year, Esteban Fernandez asked for the total number of Fideicomisos in restricted zones, by year and city.

Here is the answer he got. In case you can’t read Spanish, it basically states that the information can’t be sorted by city]

 This will be a great tool for Rocky Point in the future

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