Mexico Seeks to Recast Relationship With U.S. – NYTimes.com
With labor and transportation costs rising for production in Asia, “a lot of manufacturers are saying, ‘How can we do this differently?’ ” said Pierre Beaudoin, the chief executive of Bombardier. “You have got states today recognizing this in Mexico.”
When Bombardier decided to develop its new Learjet 85 corporate aircraft, it spread manufacturing across Canada, the United States and Mexico, shipping parts from all three countries for final assembly in Wichita, Kan. Several Mexican states competed for this country’s piece, but Querétaro’s proposal, which included a plan to attract other aerospace suppliers to a new industrial park, as well as a training school, won. Now the company is speeding up new investments here.
Its Learjet plant is deceptively quiet as young engineers in jeans run tests on a new fuselage built of lightweight composite carbon fiber. At another Bombardier plant, the rattle of bolting and welding runs along the line of tail pieces as workers install electrical and hydraulic systems before the pieces are shipped off for final assembly in Toronto.
So far, Mr. Peña Nieto has not offered specifics on how successes here can be replicated across Mexico; border cities with robust manufacturing still became some of the most violent places in Mexico because the police and judicial institutions were too weak to stop criminal groups.
Mr. Peña Nieto, analysts said, will need to focus on both economics and security.
“The picture the United States has of Mexico is old, and it’s skewed toward the violence,” said Robert A. Pastor, director of the Center for North American Studies at American University in Washington. The economy is growing, and “if Peña Nieto can change the strategy on the cartels and reduce the violence, it will grow even faster.”