There are several areas in the Mexican aerospace supply chain that domestic companies could participate in. Among them are manufacturing services such as machining, metal fabrication, smelting, and plastic injection molding.
According to, Felipe Sandoval Ramirez, president of the Mexican Federation of Aerospace Industries (FEMIA), his organization is increasingly committed to the proposition of promoting the consolidation of a sophisticated national Mexican aerospace industry supply chain.
Although, at present, only between 5% and 6% of parts and components supplied to Mexico’s aerospace manufacturers is of national origin, the president of FEMIA believes that if the right steps are taken, these numbers could eventually rise to between 50% and 60%. Achieving this level of Mexican aerospace supply chain integration would bring it to levels comparable to those found in the nation’s thriving automotive industry.
One challenge that Mexico faces in its pursuit of greater Mexican aerospace industry supply chain integration is the growth and development of a workforce that is capable of meeting the industry’s steadily growing needs.
In order to maintain its average annual growth of 15%, industry leaders will need to forge a greater cooperation between themselves and the country’s key universities. For example, the government of the state of Queretaro has been at the vanguard of this effort. In the year 2007, it established Mexico’s first National Aeronautical University. This institution of higher learning houses several technical programs developed in public-private initiatives and is the first Mexican institution of higher learning to offer a degree program in aerospace engineering. Other notable universities that offer similar advanced degrees include the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN) in Mexico City, the Autonomous University of Chihuahua (UACH), and the Autonomous Universities of Nuevo Leon and Ciudad Juarez.
In addition to educating the nation’s workforce in order to achieve the goal of growing the domestic Mexican aerospace industry supply chain, the country’s Directorate General of Civil Aeronautics (DGAC) must formulate and implement regulations that are in line with the global aerospace industry norms. Doing this will facilitate the growth of the Mexico’s aerospace sector as a whole.
Potential Mexican aerospace industry supply chain partners are assessed
In an effort to integrate more domestic manufacturers into the industry’s supply chain, FEMIA recently developed a National Supply Plan. The organization’s goal is to assess the capabilities of 1,000 companies to determine their potential to integrate themselves into the Mexican aerospace supply chain. Over the course of the last two years, FEMIA has been successful in conducting a detailed assessment of the capabilities of 460 companies. As a result of the analysis of these firms, a diversity of needs has been detected. These range from issues requiring specialized technical support to those concerning the development of competent and adequate managerial structures. In order to carry out its work, the Mexican Federation of Aerospace Industries coordinated its efforts with specialized industry clusters and governments at the local level.
In addition to coordinating with aerospace cluster groupings in several states and with local governments, FEMIA has also established a partnership with one of Mexico’s most highly regarded institutions of higher learning: the Tec de Monterrey. In the Bajio (Central Mexico), the Tec de Monterrey and the Mexican Federation of Aerospace Industries have partnered in an effort to attempt to establish links between the region’s automotive and aerospace industries.
Funding for the development of the Mexican aerospace industry supply chain
The president of FEMIA asserts that for Mexico to be successful in the promotion of the growth of the Mexican aerospace industry supply chain, companies with the potential to be domestic suppliers must have access to credit. Such firms should have the ability to obtain funds from both national and international banking institutions. According to Felipe Sandoval Ramirez, the Mexican aerospace industry must work “hand in hand with the financial and banking sector” so that the domestic industry can be sustained with globally competitive financing.
One of the domestic financial institutions that has committed itself to supporting the development of the Mexican aerospace industry supply chain is Bancomext. Bancomext is state-owned and is an instrument of the Mexican government that exists to increase the competitiveness of Mexican small and medium-sized companies. Through its targeting lending programs, Bancomext supports companies that provide services and parts and components to companies that have been identified as original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the aerospace industry.
Qualified small and medium-sized companies that seek to be a part of Mexican aerospace industry supply chain are eligible to receive up to US $3 million in financing through Bancomext. These funds may be employed in the acquisition of domestic and imported manufacturing inputs and for the financing of production processes. Companies receiving the funds must be legally established in Mexico, must be solvent, and must have a favorable credit rating.