In auto industry, El Bajio states stop competing and learn to complement each other
For the state of Guanajuato, which has been the epicenter of Mexico’s automotive boom in recent years, the key to attracting foreign investment is that El Bajio states, the central zone of the country, learned to complement instead of competing with each other for the projects. This was stated by governor Miguel Marquez in an interview for El Economista regarding the end of his term.
The head of the executive branch explained that in order to consolidate the automotive supply chain in the region, joint work between states was necessary, so during his administration he remained in constant contact with the neighboring territories.
“We understood very clearly that the market is global, that there are no borders any longer. The worst thing that had been happening for years was competing with San Luis Potosi, Queretaro, Aguascalientes; so now, on the contrary, we complement each other to grow together as a Bajío region,” he said.
As an example, he referred to the case of BMW, which had plans to settle in Guanajuato, however, opted for San Luis Potosi, but “in the end we were pleased because it helped us develop the industry in the northeast of our state.” Another case is the Toyota plant, under construction in Apaseo el Grande, which will bring great benefits to Queretaro, while Guanajuato has become a supply center for other states.
“Companies in Guanajuato are suppliers of those in San Luis Potosi, Aguascalientes, Puebla, the State of Mexico. We share the region, the suppliers, products and we have integrated as a cluster. It is a region that requires joint work. We cannot work isolated because the market demands the opposite,” he said.
The results are tangible. In 2003, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Inegi), Guanajuato, Aguascalientes, Queretaro and San Luis Potosi contributed together 7.9% of Mexico’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). For 2012, the participation of the region reached 8.8% and at the end of last year, they already accounted for a tenth.
In the case of Guanajuato, its state GDP is composed of 27.5% by manufacturing industries and of this, more than half is the manufacture of transport equipment, which is the Inegi’s statistical item that measures the automotive industry.
“We have Ford, General Motors, Toyota, Honda, Mazda, VW and 2,000 suppliers. One in every five vehicles produced in the country are made in Guanajuato, in 2020 the state will be the first car producer nationwide and the most important automotive cluster in Latin America,” he said.
You can read the complete interview in Spanish here.