A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed recently between Belize and Mexico with the aim to establish a practical framework for the development of stronger business relations between both countries.
The MOU was signed on Thursday, September 10th at the Centro de Convenciones Peninsula in Cancun, Mexico on the occasion of the “Foro de Cancun 2015.” The Hon. Erwin Contreras, Minister of Trade, Investment Promotion, Private Sector Development and Consumer Protection signed on behalf of Belize while Mr Francisco N. González Díaz, Director General of ProMéxico, signed on behalf of Mexico. The signing was witnessed by Quintana Roo’s Governor, Roberto Borge Angulo.
The MOU sets forth the procedures of co-operation for the expansion of investment and trade relations between Belize and Mexico, including the strengthening of institutional relations and capacity building through mutual cooperation between the Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) and ProMexico.
BELTRAIDE is a statutory body under the Ministry of Trade, which seeks to enhance Belize’s prosperity by fostering investor confidence, entrepreneurship, business growth and innovation.
ProMéxico is a public trust considered a public entity, sectorized to the Secretary of Economy, incorporated under the laws of the United Mexican States, being the Mexican federal government entity in charge of promoting exporting activities, internationalization of Mexican companies and activities which tend to attract foreign direct investment.
“The signing of the MOU is a very significant milestone in BELTRAIDE’s BelizeINVEST Unit’s young existence! We have now been able to formalize an MOU with PROMEXICO, one of the foremost leaders in the field of global investment promotion,” said Mr. Nick Ruiz, General Manager of BELTRAIDE’s Trade and Investment Development Division. He added: “We have been working on this since late 2012; now we can proudly claim that our international network includes a partnership with PROMEXICO, a relationship which we will leverage to increase capacity here at home.”
As part of the MOU, both BELRAIDE and ProMexico will exchange information publicly available on investment policies, rules, regulations, procedures, incentives and opportunities, and general updates on statistics and business data on Belize and Mexico. Both Parties will also collaborate to improve the investment climate of their respective countries and the effectiveness of their respective organizations by encouraging and supporting the exchange of technical expertise, knowledge and training opportunities between their respective entities in the fields of exports and investment promotion facilitation and aftercare as well as through joint efforts in best practices.
In addition, both organizations intend to encourage and provide support with guidance for business delegations (and visits of experts for fact-finding and business opportunity identification purposes, as well to reinforce their value chain), multisectorial promotion activities for markets in both countries and participation in events organized by each Party.
Furthermore, both Parties will encourage investment into their respective countries and provide facilitation services to investors from the other Party to ensure timely implementation of projects. This will include guidance and advice with the aim to attract potential investors including pre-investment guidance for the obtainment of permits, licenses and clearness and post- investment facilitation services.
As part of the MOU, BELTRAIDE and ProMexico will establish a Joint Working Group (JWG), with a member assigned from each Party, to maintain active contact. The JWG will eventually produce an Action Plan, on an annual basis, that will be implemented within the framework of the MOU. The JWG will monitor the implementation of the Action Plan and review the provisions of the MOU from time to time, taking into consideration new developments, that may necessitate the introduction of new articles or amendments to the existing ones, as may be required to promote the enhancement of business relations between Mexico and Belize.
The MOU entered into effect on September 10th 2015. Meanwhile, negotiations are also underway to establish a partial scope trade agreement between Belize and Mexico and therefore the signing of the MOU is considered an important step towards that goal.