Mexico and its Exports

In the field of international trade, Mexico is a country that does transactions for several million dollars in both, imports and exports. Focusing on the latter, we can say that sales from Mexico to international markets, now exceed U.S. $ 230.000 million. It should be noted that although many (both nationals and foreigners) see our nation as an oil producer country, the percentage of oil exports (13.4% until 2009) is going down. Although the oil industry is extremely important, the government of Mexico, knowing that oil is a non-renewable resource has reduced the dependence of both the GDP and foreign trade.

This way, crude oil (and its derivatives) appear to be the products that Mexico export the most, as well as products manufactured in Mexico. Above all other manufactures is the automotive industry, since it alone represents more than 20 percent of manufacturing exports. Despite the international crisis, the sales reach up and above 140,000 cars per year. Maquiladoras also play an important role here.

Mexico also exports parts of technology components. Such is the case of Panasonic Mexico, since 50% of its production is exported to Latin America. Overall, México exports metals, electronics, automobiles, aircraft, car engines, buses, wine, computers (Lanix is a 100% Mexican company), books, magazines, soap operas, various television programs, movies, cell phones, fine woods, bottled water, electricity, cotton, clothing, fabrics (we export denim that returns to México as jeans with a label, and its cost is three times more expensive!); paper, coal, plastics, cement, glass, medicinal plants, gold and silver jewelry, including watches.

In other areas of exports, food in general occupies an important place. Among the vegetables and other agricultural products stand the wheat (1 million 136 tons), watermelon (554,000 tons) and cucumbers / pickles (with 491,000 tons) in average per year (data provided by INEGI).

México has a solid production in several products. As an example, it has the first place in silver extraction, avocado and citrus, as well as organic food (ranging from coffee to various fruits and vegetables). It is also the market leader in green pepper and tomato, even though it is not the primary producer of this last one. It also holds the first place in the selling of papaya, onions, berries, peppers, nopales, turkey meat (both frozen and raw), tequila and beer. Our country also ranks second in exports of watermelon and asparagus, and is among the top five countries in the production and sale of lime, strawberry, coffee, pepper, coconut, mango and honey.

The main countries with which Mexico has commercial trade are, in the first place, the United States, in second place, China and in the third place, The European Union. Mexico’s other important trading partners are Japan, Brazil, and Taiwan.

Free Trade Agreements

Photo: Carl Tanzler
The trade agreements that México has celebrated with several countries, allow different products to cross the borders with a substantial reduction of fees at times. Some of these are the Free Trade Agreement with the European Union, the agreements held between Mexico-Bolivia, or México-Columbia, and of course the United States-México-Canada.

It should be noted that according to information obtained from the World Trade Organization, México is the country whose exports have been benefited more by their treaties, to the extent that over 97% of the exports are done with preferential fees; no wonder México occupies the 15th place among world exporters! (China is currently México’s main competitor in several sectors, to the extent that it took its place as the leading exporter of goods to the U.S.)

And finally, a curiosity: México is the leader exporting a strange product: Flies to combat pests, because when the natives reproduce with the exported ones, the breeds lose their reproduction capacity, thus controlling the pest. Over 120 million of these insects are sent every week to other countries!

Article produced by the Editorial Team of "Explorando Mexico".
Copyright Explorando México, All rights reserved.
Photo:Javier Hidalgo