In the next 36 months, one out of every two new investors who demand an industrial real estate space in Mexico will be of Chinese origin, specifically in key markets in the north of the national territory, according to CBRE, a consulting firm.
” And it’s not something that happened in a year (…) more and more investors keep coming from China,” said Lyman Daniels, president of CBRE Mexico, during his participation in the first virtual forum of the year of the Mexican Association of Industrial Parks Private (AMPIP).
Daniels highlighted the jump that was registered between 2018 and 2019, when the presence of investments of Chinese origin – in the class A and B industrial parks that it monitors – grew 6 times, from 4 to 24 companies that settled in the country, respectively.
Although the number of new Chinese companies stood at 12 in 2020, the prospects for higher income from these Asian companies have strengthened in the near future.
In another separate conference in the same AMPIP forum, Enrique Perret, general director of the US-Mexico Foundation, detected some signs in the political context that have been presented in the new government in the United States, which influence the “phenomenon” migration of Chinese companies in Mexico.
“Joe Biden takes out an executive board last week and says ‘I give a mandate to my entire cabinet to analyze and establish public policies that decouple us, that makes us more independent from Chinese supply chains,’ and seeing that 50% of the new clients of the industrial parks come from China because it makes all the sense ”, he assured.
“[In addition] the Exim Bank (United States export and import bank) 2 months ago established new rules of origin for the entry of products to the United States, for the importation of goods to the United States, where it lowers these requirements for that other Latin American and European countries can meet the requirement that previously only China could meet, ”explained Perret.
In fact, the president of CBRE Mexico stressed that “everywhere there is an opportunity” for the arrival of new tenants in industrial parks, an effect driven by the recovery period that the Mexican economy will experience this year, although it will be reflected in a longer time span compared to its northern neighbor.
The keys to recovery for Mexico will be job creation and the arrival of new foreign investments or the expansion of existing ones, according to Daniels.
During 2020, 139 companies made new investments or expansion in industrial parks, for the manufacturing (24.6%), automotive (18.3%), retail (14.1%), and construction (7.7%) sectors, according to CBRE data presented on the AMPIP forum.
The Mexican class A and B industrial real estate market is made up of 84.5 million square meters (m2), where 13 main markets have 52.4 million m2.
In 2020, gross absorption by industry was composed of the following: manufacturing 30%, logistics 28%, automotive 12% and electronic commerce 13%, the latter being one of the fastest-growing due to the boost this activity received by the health crisis, social confinement and changes in consumer habits.
In fact, 4 of the 10 main transactions carried out in 2020 were for the e-commerce industry, a product of Mercado Libre and Amazon activities, as shown in the following table:
“The new constants in the market are e-commerce, cold storage and data centers,” said Daniels.
A special case has appeared in industrial markets such as Reynosa, where since the closure of the border with the United States due to the appearance of COVID-19 and the complications for the workforce living in Mexico to cross to the plants established in That country has caused part of these companies to migrate to the southern neighbor, both in logistics and manufacturing activities.
“At CBRE we believe that investor confidence as of the last quarter of 2020 has improved and there is an appetite for international investors to enter the industrial market. I promise you, there is an important interest for buyers who come from abroad, especially in the north of the country due to the growth prospects in demand that are derived from USMCA and the configuration of a new supply chain based in and for America. from the North, ”said Lyman Daniels.
The executive also considered that the other trade treaties or agreements that Mexico has signed with other regions or countries, beyond the USMCA, will be essential in the country’s economic recovery.