This is a best prospect industry sector for this country.  Includes a market overview and trade data.
Last Published: 10/17/2019
Mexico is a large and consistently developing middle-income market, making internet and information technology services a best prospect industry sector for this country.


Overview

With the goal of universal connectivity, the 2013 telecommunications reform classified Internet access as a constitutional right for all Mexican citizens. In 2018, the country had 82.7 million Internet users, representing 71 percent of the population over the age of six and reflecting a growth rate of 4 percent from 2016 figures. Efforts to improve market competition resulted in a 26 percent drop in prices for communications services in 2016, according to Mexico’s telecommunications regulator, the Federal Institute of Telecommunications (Instituto Federal de Telecomunicaciones or IFT). Mexico mirrors global trends toward mobility. Ninety-two percent of Internet users connect through a smart phone, and there are currently 83.5 million active smart phones in the country, according to IFT statistics.

Increased connectivity has spurred the growth of Mexico’s emerging digital economy. According to market intelligence firm IDC, cloud computing is expected to grow 25 percent by 2020. Currently, 44 percent of Mexican businesses use public or private clouds and 32 percent expect to adopt cloud computing within the next year. According to industry analysts, Mexico is among the three most competitive mobile app markets in the Americas along with Brazil and the United States in terms of the number of apps opened per user per month, as well as the number of times an app is opened per user per month. Communications apps are the most frequently used.

The Mexican eCommerce market was worth USD 21 billion at the end of 2017. Surveys conducted by the Mexican Internet Association indicate that 60 percent of Internet users report conducting eCommerce transactions within the last three months. Mexican brick and mortar retailers are ramping up their eCommerce divisions as their share of online sales has grown to 30 percent. The Mexican Government is in the process of defining Internet-related policies and regulations on issues such as privacy, net neutrality, server localization, and intellectual property. Practices such as zero-rating are commonplace, and there are currently no safe harbors regarding intermediary liability. Mexico’s adoption of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies has been driven by its strong industrial sector, which invested USD 1.6 billion in IoT solutions in 2016. The Mexican Government’s IoT investments in 2015 (the most recent year for which figures are available) totaled USD 154 million and were concentrated in smart cities and smart grid technologies.

The IT services and outsourcing market in Mexico continues to offer great opportunities. Mexico is an attractive market for technology products from the United States related to the IT services industry and a strong global player in the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) market. Research and advisory firm Gartner ranks Mexico third globally for nearshoring and offshoring services, behind India and the Philippines. Mexico is also developing IT clusters throughout the country to offer IT, software development, call center, high-tech manufacture, and engineering services to domestic users as well as to countries in North America and Europe. The country is following the global trend towards a service-centric IT industry, where most technologies are offered under a service contract or lease. There is a growing interest in Software as a Service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), and Platforms as a Service (PaaS). The main driver for users to adopt this new business model is cost reduction in areas that are not considered mission-critical and fail to add value.

The data center market in Mexico was worth USD 2 billion in 2015 and is expected to grow 30 percent by 2020. Mexico is a leader in data infrastructure investment and is the second-largest market in Latin America in terms of data center square footage with approximately 25 percent of the region’s overall data center surface.

Mexico Internet and IT Service Market indicators
(Figures in millions)
 201720182019 (Estimated)
Fixed lines19.920.620.4
Mobile Subscribers114.3118.2121.1
3G and 4G Subscribers74.778.284.2
Broadband Subscribers17.118.119.3
     
Source: BMI Research

Mexico IT Market Overview
(Figures in USD billions)
 201720182019 (Estimated)
IT Market Value11.412.112.9
Computer Hardware Sales4.34.44.6
Personal Computer Sales1.91.92.0
Software Sales1.21.31.4
Services Sales5.86.36.8
Source: BMI Research


Leading Sub-Sectors

As in the United States, this sector is extraordinarily dynamic and diverse. The following list represents key sub-sectors where we see growth and opportunity:
  • IT security services
  • Training
  • Tailored software apps
  • Leased infrastructure (NOCs, SOCs)
  • IT system maintenance
  • Consulting and systems integration
  • CATV network apps
  • Business intelligence
  • Cloud analytics
  • Virtualization
  • Digital advertising


Opportunities

The main opportunities for IT solutions (products and services) are in those sectors that are intensifying the use of IT, including manufacturing, transportation, security, energy, retail, and financial services. Improved competition in IT and telecommunications will drive demand for core-network and other infrastructure solutions.
Most government agencies and businesses will seek to forego capital investments and identify IT service providers that can integrate turnkey solutions under a lease contract. Cloud-based solutions have seen a growing demand among small and medium-sized enterprises, which utilize these solutions to increase their competitiveness and align their IT capabilities with those of larger partners and buyers.

In addition, the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) will further improve opportunities in the sector. When NAFTA was negotiated, the digital revolution was in its infancy, and consequently NAFTA did not specifically address digital trade. The USMCA’s new chapter on digital trade contains the strongest outcomes of any international agreement and provides a firm foundation for the expansion of trade and investment in innovative products and services in North America.
Specifically, the provisions
  • Prohibit the application of customs duties and other discriminatory measures to digital products distributed electronically (e-books, videos, music, software, games, etc.).
  • Ensure that suppliers are not restricted in their use of electronic authentication or electronic signatures, thereby facilitating digital transactions.
  • Guarantee that enforceable consumer protections, including for privacy and unsolicited communications, apply to the digital marketplace.
  • Ensure that data can be transferred cross-border, and that limits on where data can be stored and processed are minimized, enhancing and protecting the global digital ecosystem.
  • Promote collaboration in addressing cybersecurity challenges, while seeking to promote industry best practices with respect to network security.
  • Protect the competitiveness of digital suppliers by limiting the ability of the United States, Mexico, or Canada to require disclosure of proprietary computer source code and algorithms.
  • Promote open access to government-generated public data, thereby enhancing its innovative use in commercial applications and services.
  • Enhance the viability of Internet platforms that depend on interaction with users by limiting the platform’s civil liability with respect to third-party content, except regarding intellectual property enforcement.


Web Resources

Federal Institute of Telecommunications (IFT)www.ift.org.mx
Mexican Internet Associationwww.asociaciondeinternet.mx
National Chamber of the Electronics, Telecommunications, and IT Industry (CANIETI)www.canieti.org
IT Industry Association (AMITI)www.amiti.org.mx


Events

Contacts

For more information on Internet and IT services in Mexico, please contact:

Teresa Verthein
Commercial Specialist
U.S. Commercial Service—Mexico City
Tel.: +52 (55) 5080-2000 ext. 5228
Teresa.Verthein@trade.gov

 

Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting http://export.gov/usoffices.



Mexico Information and Communication Technology Trade Development and Promotion