Carriers getting increasingly nervous as protectionist policies gain ground
Ocean carriers are getting increasingly nervous over trade tensions and state–subsidised competitors, as protectionist policies continue ...
Mexican shippers are seeing growth in alternative markets, following US trade policies that forwarders claim have benefited Mexico, rather than harmed it.
Speaking to The Loadstar at Fiata’s World Congress in Delhi, the director general of Planet Cargo, Galo Molina Aguilar, said Mexican exporters were diversifying as a result of US policies.
“What we are seeing is Mexico looking to its southern neighbours,” said Mr Molinar Aguilar, who also serves as president of Latin America’s largest forwarder association, Alacat.
“Mexico is becoming very active in South America and, due to a shared culture, language and the availability of raw materials, it can become a regional leader.”
Chief executive of Mexico City-based Taasa Logistics Moises Solis noted that Mexico had been forced to begin diversifying its economy to offset the potential loss of trade deals with the US.
“After the rhetoric from Washington, Mexican companies began to worry, so they started looking to different markets and developing operations there,” said Mr Solis.
“And at the end of it we didn’t even lose the trade agreement, Nafta did not disappear, we effectively resigned it.”
Last month, the two countries signed a bilateral trade deal, which the US hopes will bring back domestic automotive jobs, and yesterday a three-way partnership with Canada, USMCA, was sealed.
Some believe the 2.5% tariffs on Mexican-assembled vehicles will be more favourable than the higher US labour bills – with workers earning at least $16 an hour.
“The US got the automotive increases it sought, but really this will just be damaging for US customers rather than Mexico,” said Mr Solis.
“At home we are seeing a rise in domestic automotive sales and we are exporting more of what we make to a greater pool of customers.”
Mr Solis noted that the greatest change since the altered position of the US administration has been its trade with Asia.
He added: “I’m optimistic where Mexico goes from here.”