WHAT IS THE CURRENT SITUATION OF THE DIPLOMATIC RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN RUSSIA AND MEXICO?
Our diplomatic relations have a long history of more than 120 years and have always been on an amiable basis. Russia and Mexico concur on a number of issues in the United Nations and in such forums as the G-20, APEC, and others.
We have a well-functioning mechanism of political consultations, which has proven its efficiency. I expect even more intensive growing of our political dialogue due to our participation in the G-20 troika, together with France and our mutual agreement on the APEC agenda.
HOW HAS THE COMMERCE BETWEEN MEXICO AND RUSSIA EVOLVED IN THE PAST 5 YEARS?
Our trade relations have a very positive tendency and have almost tripled over the last 5 years, reaching US$1 billion dollars. Of course, the global economic crisis that has impacted everyone's economy has also left its impact on our bilateral commerce in 2009; but since then Russian-Mexican trade has enjoyed a continuous positive trend.
HOW HAS THE RUSSIAN INVESTMENT IN MEXICO EVOLVED AND IS THERE SPECIFIC SECTORS TARGETED BY RUSSIAN COMPANIES?
The Russian investment policy in Latin America has its own priorities and Mexico is a valuable part of the action. Although the mutual investment level is quite far from its potential, it has increased recently.
One of the most attractive sectors is tourism. Mexico is quite an unexplored destination for Russian travelers and with direct flights being opened by two Russian airlines from Moscow to Cancun this business seems to have excellent prospects for our investors.
Another investment sphere is aviation. Mexico has a growing interest in buying Russian airplanes and helicopters. This year we signed contracts on supplying these high-tech products for Mexico.
WHAT IS THE LEVEL OF SATISFACTION OF RUSSIAN COMPANIES WITH THEIR OPERATIONS IN MEXICO?
Those companies that have already experienced the Russian-Mexican cooperation have their own vision of an on-going business. Our hydro-electrical companies have spent several years doing quite a successful business in Mexico providing infrastructural service and I'm sure they will continue their activity in this market.
WHAT IS YOUR OUTLOOK FOR RUSSIAN TRADE AND INVESTMENT IN MEXICO?
Our countries have an understanding of the necessity of increasing our commerce in the future. This tendency is based on our businessmen's expectations of exploring and entering Russian and Mexican markets that until now have experienced a lack of mutual presence, when compared with other partners.
We both have a well-developed political, economic and juridical basis for giving an impulse to the private sector for a more active participation in bilateral projects.
WHAT IS YOUR OPINION ON THE MEXICAN ECONOMY?
Mexico has shown significant growth in terms of Information Technologies in recent years. Due to its fast industrialization and its economic role not only in Latin America but in the global economy, this country could serve as an example of applying new technologies to the regular life of its citizens.
Mexico can be considered as one of the world's important manufacturers of high-tech products. This fact leads to the development of other sectors such as higher education, professional training and productivity. It provides Mexico with a stable basis for attracting foreign investments. I hope that Russian investors aspire in the future to a more significant flow in the Mexican economy and their Mexican colleagues would do the same.
ANY LAST COMMENT FOR MEXICONOW SUBSCRIBERS?
I would like to wish the MexicoNOW subscribers a successful new year in 2012, one that will provide for the entire Mexican nation a continuous and stable economic development, advancement in political reforms aimed at the future and strengthening of democratic institutions.
Guaranteeing individual citizens' rights is also really important, as is the continued struggle with organized crime. All this is for the prosperity of Mexico and the Latin American community, as well. I hope that in the coming year our traditionally friendly relations will continue to evolve.