Sunday, April 26, 2015

U.S. company plans 1st Mexico-built plane

Russian helicopters are among the aircraft on display at this week's fair.
factory in Mexicali
Mexico’s first Aerospace Fair this week was the site for the announcement of another first: an airplane to be built entirely in Mexico.
United States aircraft manufacturer Spectrum Aeronautical announced it will invest US $300 million in a factory to build one of its executive jets. Construction will begin in two and a half years on the Mexicali, Baja California, plant, whose production is expected to be 200 aircraft per year, said Spectrum CEO Linden Blue.
The plane will be an executive model with up to eight seats and a maximum speed of 815 km/h.

During the fair’s opening ceremony on Wednesday, President Enrique Peña Nieto announced that Mexico’s goal is to be in the top 10 in aerospace investment by 2020. The country is currently No. 14 in terms of production and last year the industry generated exports valued at $6.4 billion. The 2020 target is $12.5 billion.

The president observed that aerospace export revenues have increased by 26% compared with 2012, making Mexico the sixth largest aircraft parts supplier to the United States, the world’s largest market, surpassing Brazil, China, Israel and Italy.

Peña Nieto noted there are over 300 aerospace companies in 18 states in Mexico, nearly five times more than there were 10 years ago.

To help meet the country’s growth target, Mexico’s state development bank had an announcement of its own.

Bancomext CEO Enrique de la Madrid said in a statement the bank plans be a part of the aerospace expansion through a financing program to help the industry take off. The new program will be similar to ProAuto, a joint project of the bank and several federal government agencies that provides credit to domestic auto parts firms that supply the auto makers.

De la Madrid said the automotive and aerospace sectors are priorities for the bank although it remains committed to expanding funding and support to all companies involved in manufacturing regardless of sectors.

More firms will be looking to grow because the bank expects a migration of production and investment from China to Mexico in the next few years.

“The reality that exists in Mexico is that the manufacturing sector remains the engine of exports and is an increasingly important player in the supply chain of North America, the world’s largest economic zone,” said the banker.

The Aerospace Fair wraps up tomorrow with an air show. It is being held at the air force base in Tecámac, State of México.
Source: Milenio (sp)
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