Mexico City — Polyurethane companies reported uncertainty following leftist Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s inauguration in December 2018.
Las Americas: New president unsettles Mexico's PU industry
The lack of confidence is worse among Mexican SMEs. Speaking at UTECH Las Americas, one executive at a multinational additives company said that, for him, it’s business as usual. 'But I have heard from customers, mostly medium and small-sized ones, that they are concerned,' he said.
Maxima Dimension is a Mexican Company which specialises in polyurethane coatings and resins. Technical manager Alfonso Roel Maldonado described it as 'a waiting game'.
'Companies are having to wait,' he said. '[They are] waiting to see if there will be changes, especially in the market that we’re most interested in: construction. [Waiting to see] what benefits there would be, if there will be improvements with new reforms.'
Karina Montes de Oca, the administrative director of Quimica Sagiatario, a Mexican specialty chemicals company based in the capital, also reported concern. 'With the transition to a government with a different ideology, there has been a bit of uncertainty,' she said.
'The market has been a little slow, there haven’t been any big investments and I think we have to expect that it will be like this for the next six months.'
President Lopez Obrador, commonly known by his initials AMLO, has had a strained relationship with the private sector. In October 2018, a month shy of his inauguration, he scrapped plans to build a new $13bn airport in Mexico City, unsettling investors.
Credit rating agencies have downgraded Mexico’s debt-laden state-owned oil company, Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex). This could also call into question the country’s investment-grade status.
UTECH Las Americas was held in Mexico City, 10-12 April 2019.