POLICY REVIEW BODY: REVIEW OF MEXICO
TPRB'S EVALUATION back
review enables the TPRB to conduct a collective examination of the
full range of trade policies and practices of each WTO member
countries at regular periodic intervals to monitor significant trends
and developments which may have an impact on the global trading
review is based on two reports which are prepared respectively by the
WTO Secretariat and the government under review and which cover all
aspects of the country's trade policies, including its domestic laws
and regulations, the institutional framework, bilateral, regional and
other preferential agreements, the wider economic needs and the
external environment. A record of the discussion and the Chairperson's
summing-up together with these two reports will be published in due
course at the complete trade policy review of Mexico and will be
available from the WTO Secretariat, Centre William Rappard, 154 rue de
Lausanne, 1211 Geneva 21.
December 1989, the following reports have been completed: Argentina
(1992 and 1999), Australia (1989, 1994 and 1998), Austria (1992),
Bahrain (2000) Bangladesh (1992 and 2000), Benin (1997), Bolivia (1993
and 1999), Botswana (1998), Brazil (1992, 1996 and 2000), Brunei
Darussalam (2001), Burkina Faso (1998), Cameroon (1995 and 2001),
Canada (1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998 and 2000), Chile (1991 and 1997),
Colombia (1990 and 1996), Costa Rica (1995 and 2001), Côte d’Ivoire
(1995), Cyprus (1997), the Czech Republic (1996 and 2001), the
Dominican Republic (1996), Egypt (1992 and 1999), El Salvador (1996),
the European Communities (1991, 1993, 1995, 1997 and 2000), Fiji
(1997), Finland (1992), Gabon (2001), Ghana (1992 and 2001), Guatemala
(2002), Guinea (1999), Hong Kong (1990, 1994 and 1998), Hungary (1991
and 1998), Iceland (1994 and 2000), India (1993 and 1998), Indonesia
(1991, 1994 and 1998), Israel (1994 and 1999), Jamaica (1998), Japan
(1990, 1992, 1995,1998 and 2000), Kenya (1993 and 2000), Korea, Rep.
of (1992, 1996 and 2000), Lesotho (1998), Macao (1994 and 2001),
Madagascar (2001), Malawi (2002), Malaysia (1993, 1997 and 2001), Mali
(1998), Mauritius (1995 and 2001), Mexico (1993, 1997 and 2002),
Morocco (1989 and 1996), Mozambique (2001), New Zealand (1990 and
1996), Namibia (1998), Nicaragua (1999), Nigeria (1991 and 1998),
Norway (1991, 1996 and 2000), OECS (2001), Pakistan (1995 and 2002),
Papua New Guinea (1999), Paraguay (1997), Peru (1994 and 2000), the
Philippines (1993 and 1999), Poland (1993 and 2000), Romania (1992 and
1999), Senegal (1994), Singapore (1992, 1996 and 2000), Slovak
Republic (1995 and 2001), the Solomon Islands (1998), South Africa
(1993 and 1998), Sri Lanka (1995), Swaziland (1998), Sweden (1990 and
1994), Switzerland (1991, 1996 and 2000 (jointly with Liechtenstein)),
Tanzania (2000), Thailand (1991, 1995 and 1999), Togo (1999), Trinidad
and Tobago (1998), Tunisia (1994), Turkey (1994 and 1998), the United
States (1989, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1999 and 2001), Uganda (1995 and
2001), Uruguay (1992 and 1998), Venezuela (1996), Zambia (1996) and
POLICY REVIEW BODY: REVIEW OF MEXICO
BY THE CHAIRPERSON back
third Trade Policy Review of Mexico has been very good, a superb
introduction to my year in the Chair. The Review has been thorough and
comprehensive, and offered plenty of food for thought about trade
issues. Our dialogue has provided a better understanding of Mexico's
trade-related policies and practices due very much to the full
involvement of Vice-Minister Villalobos and his delegation and to the
engagement of many Members. This is indeed a felicitous indication of
what this Body can accomplish and will do over the coming months.
commended Mexico for its economic performance in recent years.
Mexico's trade and investment liberalization efforts have been key
elements in its economic advancement and prospects, having resulted in
substantial increases both in trade and investment flows. In
consequence, Mexico's integration in the world economy has deepened,
making it an increasingly important economic partner.
also praised Mexico for its active participation in the multilateral
trading system, commended its strong support for the launching of the
Doha Development Agenda, and welcomed its offer to host WTO's fifth
the same time, Members noted that much of Mexico's recent
liberalization has taken place under preferential arrangements.
Several Members maintaining preferential agreements with Mexico
commented on the positive effects of such agreements on trade and
investment with Mexico. But it was also noted that, in general,
falling trade barriers under preferential agreements have not been
matched by similar improvements for MFN partners. This was a source of
concern to a number of Members, who encouraged Mexico to narrow the
applied preferential tariffs contrast sharply with the three
percentage-points increase in Mexico's average MFN tariff since its
previous Review. Noting that the measure had been announced as
temporary, and that preferential partners have not been affected,
Members requested particulars on the phasing out of the increase.
Other recent tariff increases were also questioned, notably those
affecting steel products.
commended Mexico's various initiatives to streamline and increase
transparency in many administrative areas, but they were also
concerned about Mexico's customs procedures and practices. In
particular, clarifications were requested on the price reference
mechanism introduced to combat under-invoicing, on import licensing
procedures as well as on non-preferential rules of origin. Although
transparency in the use of technical and SPS regulations has improved,
some concerns were raised with respect to measures on certain
Members noted Mexico's use of anti-dumping measures, which although
falling in number were still many, and encouraged Mexico to seek
greater transparency in this area by aligning its contingency
legislation with multilateral rules. Several Members also encouraged
Mexico to accede to WTO's Government Procurement agreement, and noted
that domestic procurement rules discriminated in favour of national
suppliers, and of several suppliers from preferential partners.
sectoral policies, several questions were asked about assistance to
the sugar industry, and plans for its further privatization. Members
expressed interest in developments in the energy sector, air and
maritime transport services and telecommunication services, notably
with respect to foreign participation, competition and liberalization.
Several Members thought it desirable to further open these activities
to private investment, observing Mexico's positive experience with
liberalization in other areas.
also sought further clarification on a number of specific areas,
rates and the gap between these and applied tariffs;
quotas maintained for agricultural products;
consistency of special import regimes (including maquila and PITEX);
content requirements in the automotive industry; and
of intellectual property rights.
Mexican delegation gave written and oral replies to questions posed
during the Review and undertook to respond in writing to some
outstanding technical issues as soon as possible. The replies provided
have made a major contribution to this meeting, and were clearly
appreciated by Members.
conclusion, I believe that through this Review we have gained a
first-hand appreciation of Mexico's achievements since its previous
Review in 1996, and of the challenges that lie ahead. Mexico is now
seen by many Members as a prime example of the benefits of trade and
investment liberalization, notwithstanding a number of cyclical and
structural problems. However, Mexico's liberalization paradigm raises
important questions for all WTO Members concerning the relationship
between preferential and MFN efforts, questions that no doubt we will
have to come to grips with as part of the Doha Development Agenda.
Mexico itself, an additional challenge is to juggle the growing number
of preferential agreements in force and under negotiation, together
with the many components of the evolving multilateral agenda.
Moreover, it is possible that dealing with issues such as ownership
and competition in some critical areas, such as transportation,
electricity, hydrocarbons and sugar, would contribute to an improved
growth profile. Mexico's first-rate participation in this Review bodes
well for its capacity to meet those challenges, to the benefit of its
people and its trading partners.