Mexico Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Advanced manufacturing (AM) is the use of innovative technologies to create existing products and the creation of new products, which can include production activities that depend on information, automation, computation, software, sensing, and networking.
The automotive industry was the earliest adopter of AM as 34 percent of manufacturing in this sector is considered “advanced”. The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the transition to AM, as it revealed important supply chains vulnerabilities and the perils of depending entirely on human labor. This has further pushed firms to automate, robotize, interconnect, and systemize industrial processes, creating a wealth of opportunities for US businesses in this field.
Today, significant opportunities for exports of U.S.-made AM technologies exist across eight priority sectors in Mexico: automotive production, heavy truck production, automotive parts, appliances, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, electronics, and in the food and beverage industry.
Mexico consistently runs a trade deficit with the world in robots and sensors, totaling (USD 30 million in 2021), which means that Mexican firms interested in utilizing these technologies must depend on imports (USD 157 million in 2021). Approximately 10 percent of this total was supplied by the United States, indicating room for growth.
Robots. Mexico imported USD 136 million worth of industrial robots in 2021 (HS 8479.50) not considering software, auxiliary equipment, or engineering services. Mexico’s largest suppliers of robots are Japan, South Korea, the United States., China, and Germany, in that order.
Sensors. Mexico imported USD 33 million worth of sensors (HS 9025.19) in 2021, about half of which originated in China. Approximately USD 12 million worth of that total was imported by the automotive and aerospace industries alone.
The race to secure the largest contracts in automation in Mexico is competitive and generally includes some of the biggest, most well-known players with an international presence. However, these larger companies are not always interested in taking on small- or medium- sized projects, which may present opportunities for interested U.S. firms.
Mexican companies of all sizes and capacities are implementing or are planning to implement AM technologies and are actively looking for both turn-key solution and assistance conceptualizing automated processes that could help them better meet their customers’ demands.
Few U.S. companies are leveraging the momentum of Mexico’s high degree of interest in AM, despite buyers’ preferences for U.S. made products. Supplier meetings are strategic to connecting with vetted reputable buyers.
For information on Mexico’s advanced manufacturing industry and events, please contact Commercial Specialist Mario Vidana via email at Mario.Vidana@trade.gov or by phone at +52 (81) 8047 3118.