Since winning the election earlier this year, Mexico’s president elect has been sending strong signals to the U.S., Spain and other countries, telling their leaders that Mexico will be ‘open for business’ under his administration. Enrique Peña Nieto will be taking office Dec. 1 of this year and has indicated his intention to open up Mexico’s government-owned concessions.
During a recent visit to Spain, the president elect talked about Mexico’s stability, referring to its political, economic and social sectors. He also offered support to Spanish industrial leaders, indicating his desire to help Spain overcome its current economic struggles. In fact, many of Spain’s largest firms already have strong ties to Mexico real estate.
A variety of news reports since his election have covered Peña Nieto’s intention to allow private investment into Mexico’s oil business and the great opportunities that are currently offered by investing in Mexico. During his recent visit to Spain, the president elect indicated that the state would continue to own Petroleos Mexicanos, or PEMEX, but he also stated that he has plans that will make it much more competitive and efficient.
According to reports by Bloomberg, Peña Nieto’s team is developing a strategy that will ‘open up Mexico’s energy industry that wouldn’t require changes to the constitution,’ which would likely involve asking Congress to ‘approve changes to the nation’s charter that would allow joint ventures and shared risk contracts.’
In addition, the World Bank currently ranks Mexico’s economy 13th in the world. The nation has achieved this status due in part to the fact that much of Mexico’s economic power is still in the hands of large corporations that were formed after the sale of government-owned companies such as Telefonos de Mexico, or Telmex, which was purchased by Carlos Slim, who is the world’s richest man. Today,Telmex owns about 90 percent of the country’s landlines and its sister company Telcel, which is also owned by Slim, owns around 80 percent of Mexico’s cellular telephone market. Slim’s America Movil, which is one of the largest corporations in the world, is the parent company for both Telmex and Telcel.
When Peña Nieto takes office in December, he will have six years to enact his planned reforms, which reportedly will focus on structural changes in the energy sector, tax system and labor markets.