MEXICO CITY – Mexican manufacturers are looking to battle their Chinese counterparts in the export of renewable energy equipment, taking advantage of recent domestic strides in that industry.
Carlos Sandoval Olvera, president of the National Council of Industrial Ecologists, or Conieco, told Efe that by year’s end 25 percent of Mexico’s total electricity capacity will come from renewable sources, up from 4 percent a few years ago, which “is a really very significant advance.”
“This is significant because since we’ve made progress in exporting refrigerators, plasma TVs and automobiles, what we’re seeing is that a lot of people want to invest in the country,” Sandoval said at the Green Expo, where Mexican and foreign companies are showcasing environmentally friendly technological solutions.
He added that many participating foreign companies “not only want to sell, but also to partner with Mexican business leaders, first as distributors and later as manufacturers.”
Sandoval said the Business Coordinating Council, the country’s leading employers body, will present President-elect Enrique Peña Nieto a study showing that Mexico not only is a consumer of renewable energy but also has the potential to be an exporter of equipment in that sector.
“For example, everyone knows that Chinese solar heaters are of very poor quality; they’re very pretty, cheap, but they don’t last long. So instead of that (we could) have equipment for our own consumption and for export,” he said.
Wind turbine blades, which are made of polyester resin, could also be manufactured, he said, adding that special resins developed by international firms already in Mexico could be put to that purpose.
A big opportunity also exists for a company to design equipment for micro-hydraulic systems and export those products, Sandoval said.
Another advantage Mexico has is that the United States will soon be bringing environmental standards for certain imports into line with those already in place in Europe, the Conieco president said.
He said those changes will provide Mexican manufacturers with a competitive advantage since Chinese products leave a bigger environmental footprint due to the impact of shipping and therefore will be forced to pay an eco-tariff.
“We’re going to put up a good fight against the Chinese,” Sandoval said.
Conieco expects some 9,500 visiting professionals at the three-day Green Expo 2012, which will run through Thursday and feature 250 exhibiting firms from 13 countries. EFE