Market Entry - Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) Industry in Mexico
About the Market
The API market is surging due to the increased demand for pharmaceutical drugs, which in turn is driven by the aging population, rising prevalence of chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular, neurological and infectious diseases. India and China are the major suppliers of APIs to North America due to their low production capacities, labor costs and the presence of a large number of global and domestic players. In order to cut down on expenses and increase profits, companies have begun outsourcing the creation of APIs to the developing countries in Asia, leading to growth in the Asian market. The safety of medication APIs are subject to stringent regulations and oversight from the country they are shipped to. Teva Pharmaceuticals Limited, Sun Pharmaceuticals Industries Limited, Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd., and Aurobindo are some key players in the market.
About the Geography
Mexico, a USD two trillion economy (15th largest in the world), is one of the emerging countries most open to FDI. Mexico’s current government, led by President Enrique Pena Nieto emphasized on financial reforms with a long-term aim to improve competitiveness and economic growth. However, mounting organized crime, corruption and administrative inefficiency are hampering development.
The Mexican government has taken on large-scale economic reforms that aim to help ensure the safety of investment operations. In 2000, Mexico signed a free trade agreement called the ‘Global Agreement’, which focuses on commercial liberalization, political dialogue, and cooperation with the EU. Since the NAFTA came into force 22 years ago, Mexico has served as a low manufacturing cost base with direct, duty-free access to the United States. In 2014, the government came up with a national infrastructure plan to improve infrastructure for future operations. SEZs were also created to provide various incentives, trade facilities, duty-free customs benefits and easier regulatory processes.
Despite liberal government policies, there are some unique challenges like comparatively high-interest-rate for a country with a growing banking sector. Mexico’s economic stability is directly tied to the well-being of the US economy. Some sectors are reserved exclusively for Mexican nationals or State and the large size of the country presents supply chain challenges. However, Mexico offers many advantages such as labor costs comparable to Asia-based manufacturing and a strategic location between North and South America, making it attractive to firms who want to break into any of these markets. A young and skilled labor workforce coupled with government support to FDIs makes Mexico a top choice for investors.
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