Includes information on average tariff rates and types that U.S. firms should be aware of when exporting to the market.
There are no tariffs for products made in the United States that meet rules of origin requirements under the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement (USMCA). However, there are several exceptions and caveats noted below that may affect overall pricing of U.S. exports. See our USMCA Day One website for a thorough explanation of USMCA certification of origin. The USMCA includes new rules of origin for autos, auto parts, chemicals, and steel-intensive products, thus affecting their tariff treatment. For a complete review of the USMCA, visit the Office of United States Trade Representative website. Few U.S. exports are subject to antidumping duties that limit access to the Mexican market. A list of these products may be found at the U.S. International Trade Administration’s page on Mexico Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duty Measures.
Mexico has implemented a Sectoral Promotion Program (Programas de Promoción Sectorial or PROSEC), which reduces Most Favored Nation (MFN) tariffs to zero or five percent on a wide range of important inputs needed by Mexico’s export manufacturing sector. This program includes 20 different industry sectors and affects 16,000 HS codes. Mexican companies must be registered under this program to participate. The complete list of HS codes and sectors that must comply with PROSEC can be found in Annex 10 - Sectors and HS Codes via the Mexican Tax Administration Service’s website.
For tariff rates of goods, you may also check the Customs Info Database Tariff Lookup Tool
All USMCA-compliant products “definitively” imported into Mexico are no longer assessed the customs processing fee (CPF). Products temporarily imported for processing and re-export may be subject to the CPF since the imports are not considered “definitive.” The import duty, if applicable, is calculated on the U.S. plant value (FOB price) of the product, plus the inland U.S. freight charges to the border and any other costs listed separately on the invoice and paid by the importer. These can include charges such as export packaging, inland freight cost, and insurance.
We strongly urge all U.S. companies planning to bring samples, equipment, displays, or any other item into Mexico on a temporary basis to utilize an ATA Carnet. Mexico signed onto the international carnet system in 2014, and companies have had temporary import goods impounded by Mexican Customs when those goods were not accompanied by an ATA Carnet. See our Temporary Entry topic below for more information on temporary imports. To contact ATA Carnet Mexico executives for more information, please check the ATA Carnet Mexico website.
In addition, Mexico has a value-added tax (IVA) on most sales transactions, including sales of foreign products. The IVA rate is 16 percent for all of Mexico. Basic products, such as food and drugs and some services, are exempt from the IVA.
A special tax on production and services (IEPS) is assessed on the importation of alcoholic beverages, cigarettes and cigars, soda pops, energy drinks, high calorie foods, junk foods, and fuels. This tax may vary from 25 to 160 percent depending on the product.
Special Economic Zones (Zonas Económicas Especiales or ZEEs) are now entirely under state jurisdiction. As of April 2021, there are only two federal ZEE-style projects being developed where fiscal incentives would apply. These are the Trans-Isthmic Interoceanic Corridor and the Chetumal State border area. See the section on Transportation Infrastructure for more information.
2022 Import Tax Exemptions, Temporary Program
To combat inflation and stem rising food prices, the Mexican government (GOM) announced on May 4, 2022, a package of measures that will apply through October 1, 2022, some of which might be of interest to U.S. exporters.
For a select group of 24 agricultural commodities and basic inputs outlined in more detail below, the GOM has exempted traders and logistics providers from complying with recently enacted requirements related to the Carta Porte Complement (CCP) / Electronic Invoice & Bill of Lading Complement. The GOM has left open the possibility of extending this measure, if necessary, for up to six more months.
The GOM will apply no tariffs on the importation of basic goods and supplies to include corn oil, palay rice, tuna, pork, chicken, beef, onion, jalapeño pepper, beans, eggs, toilet soap, tomato, milk, lemon, apple, orange, box bread, potato, pasta for soup, sardine and carrot, corn flour, wheat flour, white corn, sorghum corn, and wheat.
The GOM will eliminate its compensatory quota for the importation of ammonium sulfate for one year in order to facilitate the manufacture of fertilizers in Mexico.
These measures will be made official through the SAT portal and will be published in Mexican Official Gazette. More information on this program can be found at the following links:
GOM’s official presentation on PACIC (specifically points 2 and 3)
Official PACIC Press release For more information and help with import tariffs in Mexico please contact:
Manuel “Manny” Velazquez
U.S. Commercial Service—Monterrey
Tel.: +52 (81) 8047-3248