A fast pace of growth characterizes the present commercial drone manufacturing in Mexico, as well as their sale and use.
At present, and as in the case in areas of regulatory complexity, the issuance for the use of commercial drones in Mexico are experiencing delay. Nevertheless some revisions to the Mexican drone regulation COAV23-10R2 were made in 2015. One of the important changes that has been effectuated is that the classification of efforts related to commercial drone manufacturing in Mexico and their use fall into three categories:
- small-sized drones that weigh 2 kilograms (4.4 pounds) or less;
- medium-size drones that weigh between 2 and 25 kilograms (55 pounds);
- large drones over 25 kilograms.
The drones that are classified as “small” are allowed to fly without a permit, the medium sized drones require an operating permit, with the exception of those drones that are operated on the grounds of a flight. Finally large commercial drones in Mexico must obtain a permit. Additionally, their use requires that the operator hold a pilot’s license.
Some basic rules for use of the unmanned aircraft in the commercial drone market in Mexico have been implemented and fine tuned. With respect to small and medium-sized UAVs, however, the nation’s government has made a concerted effort to limit related regulatory requirements. For instance there are different and less restrictive rules for small and medium-size drones operating over a remote crop field, when compared to the regulatory oversight that has been imposed for large drones that operate over populated areas.
The commercial drone market in Mexico is not only characterized by more use and consumption, but also is increasingly developing as a venue for more manufacturing of product. For instance, one of the biggest producers in the commercial drone market in Mexico, as well as in general, 3D Robotics, has set up shop in Tijuana, Baja California. One of its co-founders of the firm is a local entrepreneur. The company employs approximately 220 skilled workers at a lower wage rate than would be encountered north of the border. Although production takes place in Mexico, 3D Robotics conducts the company’s business activities on both sides of the border, and has sold tens of thousands of drones. The promising company has raised $35 million from venture capitalists to date.