Mexico - Country Commercial Guide
Environmental Technologies

This best prospect industry sector includes water technologies, air pollution control, waste management, and recycling. This summary includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2020-08-17

Overview
The environmental technologies and water markets in Mexico are poised for growth over the next few years because of Mexico’s commitment to addressing climate change, political will to fund projects in the sector, and a strong need for infrastructure modernization. Public and private-sector stakeholders are keen to address many of Mexico’s greatest challenges in these sectors with the latest products, technology, and expertise. As a result, these sectors provide good business opportunities for U.S. companies in the 2021–2022 timeframe.

Water
The market for water and wastewater sub-sectors in Mexico is estimated to decrease 5.2 percent from 2019–2020, while exports from the United States to Mexico are expected to be 64.9 percent of the total import market. The National Water Commission (Comisión Nacional de Agua or CONAGUA) reports that 77 percent of available water is used in the agricultural sector, nine percent in the industrial and services sector, and 14 percent in urban areas.

CONAGUA’s budget for 2020 is approximately USD 3.4 billion, which will be used to fund improvements to the existing potable water and municipal wastewater infrastructure, and to increase infrastructure for water irrigation projects in Mexico’s agriculture areas. The Government also plans on investing in nine public-private investment projects in municipal wastewater treatment plants projects as well as potable water treatment plants at various metropolitan areas valued at USD 900 million.

The main water challenges in Mexico are over-exploitation, inadequate infrastructure, and contamination of water resources. Nine million people do not have access to potable water, and eleven million are not connected to sewage lines. To address these issues, as part of the National Water Plan (Programa Nacional Hídrico or PNH) for 2019 that runs through 2024, the Government seeks to modernize the country’s infrastructure through public policies and other new initiatives, such as systems to measure consumption and improve water management in urban and agriculture areas of the country.

Mexico Water Technology Market Size
(Figures in USD billions)

 

2017

2018

2019

2020 (Estimated)

Total Local Production

1.07

1.40

1.19

0.95

Total Exports

0.95

1.70

1.49

1.19

Total Imports

4.24

4.30

3.87

3.28

Imports from the US

2.46

2.58

2.37

2.13

Total Market Size*

4.36

4.00

3.57

3.04

Exchange Rates

18.91

19.22

19.26

20.00

*Total market size = (total local production + imports) – exports
Source: Central Bank of Mexico (Banco de Mexico), National Bank for International Trade (BANCOMEXT), Secretariat of Economy, Global Trade Atlas, Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC), National Water Commission (CONAGUA), National Council of Industrial Ecologists (CONIECO), & interviews with importers, distributors, and end-users of water and wastewater equipment and services.

Environmental Technologies
The market for environmental technologies in Mexico is estimated to decrease by 0.2 percent from 2019 to 2020, while exports from the United States to Mexico are expected to be 64.7 percent of the total imports market over the same period.

The Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources (Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales or SEMARNAT) is the federal entity in charge of the laws, standards, programs, and initiatives that shape the environmental sector in Mexico. Throughout the years, one of SEMARNAT's priorities has been to promote green development in Mexico—advancing economic growth and development in Mexico by promoting a more competitive, sustainable, and low-carbon-emissions economy.

One example of these initiatives was the General Climate Change Law (Ley General de Cambio Climático), which is the national guide for climate change policy for the medium- to long-term with 10-, 20-, and 40-year goals. The General Climate Change Law aims to generate at least 35 percent of electricity from clean energy sources by 2024, reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 50 percent by 2050 (compared to GHG emissions in 2000), and derive at least 50 percent of electricity from clean sources by 2050.

Mexico Environmental Technologies: Air, Waste Management, Recycling
(Figure in USD billions)

 

2017

2018

2019

2020 (Estimated)

Total Local Production

1.95

2.10

1.84

1.58

Total Exports

0.73

1.0

0.85

0.68

Total Imports

1.74

2.80

2.68

2.41

Imports from the US

1.25

1.90

1.74

1.56

Total Market Size*

2.96

3.90

3.67

3.31

Exchange Rates

18.91

19.22

19.26

20.00*

*Total market size= (total local production + imports) – exports 
Source: Central Bank of Mexico (Banco de Mexico), National Bank for International Trade (BANCOMEXT), Mexican Secretariat of Economy (SE),

Mexican Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT), Mexican Congress (Cámara de Diputados), Mexican Tax Authority (SAT), Mexican Geography and Statics Institute (INEGI), U.S. International Trade Administration, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, United Nations, Business Monitor, World Trade Atlas, bank reports and interviews with importers, distributors, and end-users of air, waste management and recycling equipment and services.

Leading Sub-Sectors
The leading sub-sectors for U.S. companies are in water resources equipment and services and environmental technologies, such as solid waste management, soil remediation, recycling, and air monitoring. U.S. products and services are considered competitive in the Mexican market due to quality, post-sale services, and guarantees offered by U.S. companies. 

Opportunities
The U.S. Commercial Service Mexico is happy to assist you in exploring market opportunities for environmental technologies. Here are some highlights.

Upgrading of Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plants
In 2020 and 2021, CONAGUA and the Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat (Secretaría de Agricultura y Desarrollo Rural or SADER) will continue with upgrades to existing municipal wastewater treatment plants that are in over 1,400 municipalities in the states of Guerrero, Oaxaca, Veracruz, Tabasco, Coahuila, Sonora, Sinaloa, Chiapas, and Michoacán. The estimated budget projected by CONAGUA for the project is USD 200 million.

Upgrading of Potable Water Treatment Plants
In 2019, CONAGUA—in collaboration with the Mexico City water authorities, water authorities of the States of Puebla, Coahuila, Durango, Baja California Note and Baja California Sur—will publish international bids in Mexico’s Daily Gazette. These tenders will invite companies to participate in various projects, including some to be financed by the North American Development Bank at U.S. and Mexican border cities. The projects include the upgrade of existing potable water treatment plants, building of a desalination plant for the city of La Paz, State of Baja California Sur, Rehabilitation of the Rio Colorado-Tijuana Aqueduct, and water and wastewater infrastructure for the Santa Lucia International Airport. The estimated budget projected by CONAGUA in its National Water Plan for 2019–2024 is USD 900 million.  

Waste Management and Recycling
In February 2020, the Mexico City Secretariat of Environment (Secretaria de Medio Ambiente or SEDEMA) announced a public tender for the installation and operation of treatment and use of solid waste in Mexico City. The main objective is to guarantee the treatment of at least 1,000 tons of daily solid urban waste sent to landfills from Mexico City transfer stations. The tender will select the treatment technologies, define the use of organic waste sent to transfer stations, and select solid urban waste use and treatment technologies in accordance with the solid urban waste inventory published in 2018. The office responsible for the tender is the General Directorate for Impact Assessment and Environmental Regulation. The ID of the public tender is 06C001 and the contract type is acquisition of services. 

Air Pollution Control
The Federal Government developed management programs known as ProAire reverse the deterioration of and improve air quality in major Mexican cities and incorporate specific measures for the reduction and control of pollutant emissions. The programs are based on the relationship between emission pollutants, their sources, their impact on air quality, and community health. Additionally, in coordination with other federal agencies, SEMARNAT is responsible for implementing programs that reduce emissions from industries under federal jurisdiction and programs for verifying vehicle emissions. 

On June 3, 2019, the Mexico City Government presented the Emissions Reduction Plan for the Mobility Sector, which is the framework for implementing more sustainable transport systems and improving existing technology to reduce emissions. Mexico City’s head of government, Claudia Sheinbaum, commented during the presentation that the estimated investment for the mobility plan is MXN 55 billion (approximately USD 2.8 billion) and it will require the support of several private financing schemes. The objective is to improve operability and mobility in Mexico City and the metropolitan area and to reduce 30 percent of contaminant emissions by 2024.

Emissions Control
The National Emissions Registry (Registro Nacional de Emisiones or RENE), an instrument of the General Law on Climate Change, seeks to compile information regarding the emission of greenhouse gases and compounds. This creates an area of opportunity for U.S. technologies as companies of industries such as energy, transportation, agricultural, waste management, commercial trade, and services, have to report their direct and indirect emissions of greenhouse gases or compounds from all their facilities when they exceed 25,000 tons of CO₂ equivalent.

Web Resources 

Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT)

www.semarnat.gob.mx

National Water Commission (CNA)

www.cna.gob.mx

National Institute of Ecology and Environmental Change (INECC)

www.inecc.gob.mx

Attorney General for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA)

www.profepa.gob.mx

Mexican Institute of Water Technology (IMTA)

www.imta.gob.mx

National Bank for Public Works (BANOBRAS)

www.banobras.gob.mx

Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC)

www.becc.org

National Council of Industrial Ecologists of Mexico (CONIECO)

www.conieco.com.mx

National Association of Water and Sanitation Companies of Mexico (ANEAS)

www.aneas.com.mx

Mexico City Secretariat of Environment (SEDEMA)

 

www.sedema.cdmx.gob.mx

Events

Contacts
For more information on the environmental technologies and water sectors in Mexico, please contact:
Francisco Cerón
Commercial Specialist, Water
U.S. Commercial Service—Mexico City
Tel: +52 (55) 5080-2000 ext. 5211
Francisco.Ceron@trade.gov

Claudia Salgado
Commercial Specialist, Environmental Technologies
U.S. Commercial Service—Mexico City
Tel: +52 (55) 5080-2000 ext. 5224
Claudia.Salgado@trade.gov