Language selection


Canada-Mexico Partnership - 2021 Annual Report

Table of contents

Part I: Message from the National Co-chairs

As National Co-chairs, it gives us great pleasure to present the 2021 Annual Report of the Canada-Mexico Partnership (CMP). Seventeen years have passed since the instauration of this important bilateral mechanism. Throughout its history, the Partnership has demonstrated its ability to serve as a forum for political coordination through which dialogue between federal and state authorities, the private sector and civil society of both countries is fostered. This mechanism continues to be the fundamental pillar of our relation in economic, commercial, social, academic, and cultural affairs, among others.

Thanks to the CMP, multiple actors from various sectors meet annually, regardless of changes at the political level in our respective countries. The prevailing success of the CMP is due to its continuing adaptability to reflect the priorities established by the stakeholders. Its ultimate goal is to provide an exclusive forum to encourage greater participation of stakeholders who bring innovative visions to the bilateral relationship, in order to develop strategies to increase our economic competitiveness and improve bilateral cooperation in agri-business; creativity and culture; energy; environment; forestry; human capital; mining; and trade, investment, and innovation.

The 2021 Annual Report presents an exhaustive compilation of results from the 17th Annual Meeting of the Canada-Mexico Partnership. Due to the gradual lifting of the health security measures imposed given COVID-19 and in response to a world in transition to a post-pandemic era, this edition of the CMP, led by the Government of Mexico, was carried out in a hybrid mode, both face-to-face and virtually. On November 25, 2021, five (5) working groups held their respective sessions:

  1. Creativity and Culture
  2. Environment
  3. Forestry
  4. Human Capital
  5. Trade, Investment, and Innovation

The Mining Working Group met in advance, on November 23; while the Agribusiness Working Group, by agreement of both delegations, held its meeting on April 4, 2022. During these sessions, the Co-chairs of each Working Group reviewed the achievements made during 2021 and advanced the collaborative priorities in each of the topics of mutual priority interest.

As in the 2020 edition, during the 17th Annual Meeting of the CMP, the Mexican Secretariat of Foreign Affairs and Global Affairs Canada emphasized the importance that the participating working groups include a gender perspective in their work.

Furthermore, by initiative and with the support of both Embassies, members of the Canada – Mexico Youth Lab, an initiative aimed at increasing collaboration between youth of both countries, participated in the event. The young delegates had the opportunity to provide recommendations and project proposals during the CMP Co-chairs’ Roundtable. Both governments, as well as all the parties involved, recognized the importance of following up on the suggestions made by the group and incorporating their voices as agents of change in order to strengthen bilateral collaboration in multiple sectors.

We want to thank all the working groups for the tangible results they seek to deliver year after year and for their strategic vision to achieve more goals and formulate new objectives during 2022. The Canada-Mexico Partnership remains vitally important and continues to benefit from the contributions of the provinces and states, civil society, academia, and the private sector. We reiterate our sincere request that all the Groups include a gender perspective in their work plans for 2022 to contribute to building a relationship between our countries that recognizes and reduces inequalities. We also encourage all working groups to try to hold regular meetings to advance on shared priorities. Finally, we have no doubt that 2022 will be as or even more successful than previous years in the strengthening of the Canada-Mexico bilateral relationship.

Michael Grant
Assistant Deputy Minister for the Americas
Global Affairs Canada

Roberto Velasco
Chief Officer for North America
Secretariat of Foreign Affairs, Mexico

Part II: Profile and 2021 Institutional Report

The CMP was launched in 2004 by the governments of Canada and Mexico as a bilateral initiative to promote public and private cooperation. It involves participants from the Canadian and Mexican governments, business sectors, non-governmental organizations, and other stakeholders. Eight working groups met within the framework of the CMP 2021, whose goal is to enhance collaboration in their respective sectors of interest. While each Working Group operates autonomously during the year, all CMP members gather for an annual meeting, which is hosted on an alternating basis by each country. The most recent meeting was organized by Mexico in a hybrid manner (face-to-face and virtual) on November 25, 2021.

Although the CMP involves a wide spectrum of actors from different government departments, the general coordination and management is jointly led by Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and the Mexican Secretariat of Foreign Affairs (SRE). The national Co-chairs are the Assistant Deputy Minister for the Americas at GAC and the Chief Officer for North America at the SRE.

From the beginning, the CMP was designed as a flexible entity, subject to ongoing revision and adjustment to best reflect the changing dynamics and priorities of our respective governments and societies. For instance, one of the acquired commitments during this edition was the creation of a Foreign Policy Working Group which will have as its main priority the broadening of the bilateral relationship towards a more integral, progressive and comprehensive vision as strategic actors for the efficient and effective functioning of the North American structure.

Ongoing revitalization and revision of the CMP is consistent with successful past practices and can further stimulate synergies and innovation, streamline working groups, and achieve greater involvement from various stakeholders, including state/provincial authorities, representatives from non-governmental organizations and academia.

Working groups and activities of the CMP

The activities of the working groups of the CMP define the efforts of the Partnership as a whole. Each working group is co-chaired by Canadian and Mexican senior governmental officials from the appropriate ministries and secretariats. Currently, the eight working groups are:

Canadian working groups Co-chairs are from the following institutions:

Mexican working groups co-chairs are from the following institutions and agencies:

Annual Meetings of the CMP

Canada and Mexico alternate hosting duties each year. The Annual Meetings serve as a focal point for the reorientation of the activities of the working groups and, at the same time, present the opportunity for the Co-chairs to analyze the achievements, efficiency and future course for their collaborative efforts. The main objective of each Annual Meeting is to adopt and promote a strategic vision, as well as a work plan aligned with the priorities of the bilateral agenda.

Occasionally, some working groups hold joint meetings in order to share experiences, build partnerships, and identify and develop cross-cutting projects. The CMP also promotes the participation of other stakeholders in the Annual Meetings, including academic and private sector leaders from both countries and from the Canadian provinces and Mexican states, which in the past has led the participation of representatives from Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Chihuahua, Jalisco, Morelos, and the State of Mexico.

Overall, the Annual Meeting serves as a space to highlight the impact of this Partnership on the bilateral relationship, in which all participants can exchange views, experiences and best practices. Furthermore, it provides a networking stage for all its members. The Canada-Mexico Partnership is the most important mechanism to promote the bilateral relationship.

The CMP has held the following annual meetings:

  1. Ottawa, Ontario - October 25 2004
  2. Vancouver, British Columbia - September 30 2005
  3. Mexico City, F.D. - March 7, 2007
  4. Kanata, Ontario - March 4-5, 2008
  5. Jiutepec, Morelos - March 23-24, 2009
  6. Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario - April 19-20, 2010
  7. Mexico City, F.D. - April 7-8, 2011
  8. Ottawa, Ontario - May 29-30, 2012
  9. Mexico City, F.D. - July 8-9, 2013
  10. Calgary, Alberta - September 8-10, 2014
  11. Mexico City, CDMX - November 25-26, 2015
  12. Ottawa, Ontario - December 23-24, 2016
  13. Mexico City, CDMX - November 23-24, 2017
  14. Ottawa, Ontario - October 11-12, 2018
  15. Mexico City, CDMX - November 27-28, 2019         
  16. Virtual Meeting (organized by Canada) - November 26, 2020
  17. Hybrid Meeting, CDMX/virtual - November 25, 2021 

Part III - Reports of the working groups

Agri-business Working Group

Canadian Co-chairs

Kathleen Donohue
Assistant Deputy Minister, International Affairs
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC)

Keith Currie
First Vice President
Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA)

Mexican Co-chairs

Santiago Argüello Campos
Acting General Coordinator of Agriculture
Secretariat of Agriculture and Rural Development (SADER)

Humberto Jasso Torres
Vice President of Foreign Trade
National Agriculture Council (CNA)          

Introduction and objectives

Three topics, jointly proposed and mutually agreed to, were addressed during the session to create opportunities for small and medium-sized businesses and promote even greater engagement and increased agri-food trade between Canada and Mexico.


Theme 1: Opportunities and challenges in trade flows

The Agribusiness Working Group of the Canada-Mexico Partnership (ABWG) recognized the importance of continuing to work through strategic alliances and maintaining free trade, avoiding unnecessary barriers, as well as jointly defending and promoting the spirit of the CUSMA/T-MEC/-USCMA.

Concerns were expressed about possible restrictions on regional trade that could be imposed by the United States, with measures such as seasonal produce and country-of-origin labeling.

The inclusion of Indigenous communities within the Canada-Mexico agriculture trade relationship is an initiative that implies a win-win situation for both countries with regard to promoting the economic development of Indigenous Peoples through the diversification of markets for their export products, without distinction of size or origins.

Theme 2: Labour topics

The ABWG recognized the ongoing labour force shortage in North America and globally. The group discussed what each country is doing respectively to attract workers to the agriculture and agri-food sectors.

ABWG members, recognized the importance of the Temporary Foreign Workers (TFW) program to the Canadian agriculture sector and to Mexican labourers. Participants agreed the TFW program should continue.

The ABWG recognized the hard work that has been carried out and led by the National Agricultural Council to comply with the labour obligations within the framework of the CUSMA/T-MEC/-USCMA, and its efforts to promote social responsibility within the agricultural sector.

Regarding the impact of energy on Mexico’s domestic agricultural sector, Mexico indicated that the Secretariat of Energy has granted permits to industry for the co-generation of energy using sugar cane as a source for biomass, which is in line with the bio-economy policy goals of the Mexican Administration.

Theme 3: National and international pesticide initiatives

Both countries pointed out the importance of maintaining and prioritizing the dialogue on science innovations, including the use of glyphosate to jointly address production needs, taking into account the challenges producers face, such as the effects of the pandemic, labour shortages in the agriculture workforce, and the value chain impacts of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, including significantly higher prices for all crop inputs.

It was recognized that sustainability is an outcome of great importance for both countries, and warrants greater dialogue, with realistic actions, as well as close communication to address the challenges faced by both countries to generate joint solutions.

Participants were informed that Mexico’s National Institute of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery Research (INIFAP) has been conducting field trials over the past year to identify alternatives for the use of glyphosate as mandated in the Decree that was published on December 31, 2020. These include mechanical weed control and other herbicides approved by COFEPRIS, some with an organic designation, or a mix of herbicides and tillage. However, so far, none of these have been found to be feasible alternatives in terms of the cost-benefit analysis for replacing glyphosate. 

As part of the Decree, Mexico indicated it is establishing volume quotas to limit imports of glyphosate to what is needed to satisfy domestic demand until a feasible alternative for glyphosate can be identified.

It was acknowledged that glyphosate is a key input for the production of corn and noted that Mexico is working to increase its self-sufficiency of yellow corn by doubling its current production yields by 2024.This will reduce imports by 8 million tons of the estimated total of 18 million tons of imports

Gender perspective

ABWG participants agreed to identify actions for the benefit of women and marginalized groups.

Future actions

Theme 1: Opportunities and challenges in trade flows

The Mexican private sector suggested developing a work plan to pre-empt and, if necessary, mitigate the trade risks of the United States unilaterally imposing seasonal produce and country of origin labeling measures, including an analysis of dates, events and initiatives.

Both delegations agreed to exchange information and collaborate jointly on issues of mutual interest (i.e., seasonal produce and country of origin labelling).

The ABWG agreed to develop a work plan that includes activities to share agricultural practices, experiences and programs (for example, Canada’s living laboratory) to further strengthen commercial relationships, as well as greater inclusion of Indigenous communities and small producers.

An exhibition of selected products will be organized within the framework of the 18th Annual Meeting of the Canada-Mexico Partnership. Canada will organize the CMP and work with Mexico to bring together the Indigenous communities of both countries. Mexico will organize the exhibition of select Mexican Indigenous products.

Theme 2: Labour topics

Canada and Mexico agreed on the importance of the labour issue, for which they agreed to exchange information and collaborate jointly on this topic.

Theme 3: National and international pesticide initiatives

The Canadian Grain Council offered to share its experience on the reclamation and improvement of degraded soils through virtual seminars and sharing Canada’s experience with the living lab model.

Mexico named Briegel Ortiz from the Secretariat of Agriculture and Norberto Valencia from the National Agricultural Council, as points of contact for Mexico, to follow up on the agreements and future work. Canada committed to provide points of contact for this purpose.

Challenges and opportunities

Theme 1: Opportunities and challenges in trade flows

ABWG participants recognized the CUSMA/T-MEC/ USCMA presents many opportunities and challenges. One common area of concern is the potential surge of trade remedy actions and investigations by the United States (U.S.) such as the United States’ seasonal produce plan and implementation of country-of-origin labeling. Both sides committed to sharing information and continuing to collaborate on these topics, since we are complementary trading nations, and it is critical that trade flows freely as agreed by CUSMA/T-MEC/-USCMA and in the WTO.

Theme 2: Labour topics

The ABWG emphasized the need to carry out better planning and mapping of the workforce in the agri-food sector value chains, in order to document safety requirements, and the economics and availability of agricultural employment by region, to have better information available for decision making in the sector.

Taking into account labour force shortages, it is necessary to continuously identify areas for improvement for the benefit of temporary workers.

The public and private sectors of both countries recognized that agricultural labour force shortages in North American are highly worrisome regionally as well as worldwide. These must be addressed jointly, by sharing successful experiences and by making proposals for solutions to the problems in order to maintain and increase food supplies competitively with a positive social impact.

Theme 3: National and international pesticide initiatives

Both countries reaffirmed that farmers face similar challenges (environmental, social and economic) and opportunities in North America to continue to sustainably develop the grain and oilseed industry with a smaller environmental footprint. The best way to address this is to work together with private sector initiatives and governments, in a quadripartite manner, to increase productivity and competitiveness with a focus on sustainability and recognizing the importance of the public benefits of clean water, healthy soil, biodiversity and thriving Indigenous communities. To help realize these benefits, Mexico, like Canada is also promoting the use of conservation tillage practices, which are being adopted in certain production regions.

Creativity and Culture Working Group

Canadian Co-chair

Madona Radi
Director General of the International Trade Branch
Canadian Heritage (CH)

Mexican Co-chair

Pablo Raphael de la Madrid
Director General of Cultural Promotion and Festivals
Secretariat of Culture (SC)

Introduction and objectives

The Creativity and Culture Working Group (CCWG) held its annual meeting on November 25, 2021. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the meeting was hosted by Mexico in a virtual format. The Mexican delegation was led by Pablo Raphael de la Madrid, Director General of Cultural Promotion and Festivals, Mexican Secretariat of Culture, while the Canadian delegation was led by Madona Radi, Director General of the International Trade Branch, Department of Canadian Heritage.

The CCWG had a robust meeting agenda and attracted over 55 participants, reflecting the countries’ interest in cultural cooperation. The Canadian delegation was represented by officials from Canadian Heritage, Global Affairs Canada, the Embassy of Canada in Mexico, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada, and the portfolio agencies of Canadian Heritage, the National Film Board and the Canada Council for the Arts.

The Mexican delegation was represented by officials from the Secretariat of Culture, the Centre of Digital Culture, the Mexican Institute of Cinematography (IMCINE), the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), the National Institute of Fine Arts and Literature (INBAL), the National Copyright Institute (INDAUTOR), the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs, the Embassy of Mexico in Canada and Mexican delegates from the Canada-Mexica Youth Lab.

The Annual Meeting presented an opportunity to deliver presentations, review the existing Action Plan and find common areas of interest to guide the work in year 2022, such as: digital platforms and cultural activities; collective rights; cinema; conservation of cultural heritage; artistic education and artistic residencies, among others.

Likewise, the possibility of carrying out actions not only bilaterally but also regionally with the Pacific Alliance in terms of strengthening human capital was also addressed.


Gender perspective

Future actions

Challenges and opportunities


The CCWG annual meeting focused on the 6 following themes; youth, Indigenous Peoples; digital strategy; human capital (creative economy, residencies); protection of cultural heritage; and working together for inclusion and diversity in the framework of a common regional identity (Canada-Mexico-USA).

The co-chairs committed to working together to make the Working Group’s Action Plan more results oriented and divide activities into three (3) main themes:

Both parties committed to continuing the sharing of information and best practices on how to reactivate our creative economies, as the world slowly comes out of the pandemic. The parties will pursue ad hoc opportunities throughout the year to meet before November 2022 to build on more tangible deliverables at the working-level; for example, by meeting on items such as copyright, Indigenous arts and cultural expressions; digital strategy, and diversity of content online.

Environment Working Group

Canadian Co-chair

Jeanne-Marie Huddleston
Director General, Bilateral Affairs and Trade
Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC)

Mexican Co-chair

Miguel Ángel Zerón Cid
Head of the International Affairs Unit
Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT)

Introduction and objectives

The Environment Working Group (EWG) of the Canada-Mexico Partnership (CMP) is the main mechanism for identifying issues of common interest in environmental protection and collaboration on bilateral initiatives.

The EWG virtually met on November 25, 2021, with the objective of reflecting on the activities of the 2021 Work Plan (environmental cooperation through trade agreements, sound management of chemicals, pesticides and hazardous wastes, capacity building for wastewater treatment plants workers, nature based solutions to address climate change and stakeholder engagement) as well as discussing potential new areas for future collaboration. The session was virtually co-chaired by Jeanne-Marie Huddleston, Director General of Bilateral Affairs and Trade at Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) and Miguel Angel Zerón Cid, Head of the International Affairs Unit in Mexico’s Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT). The EWG welcomed over 50 participants, from across ECCC and SEMARNAT, in addition to representatives from Parks Canada, Mexico’s National Commission on Natural Protected Areas (CONANP), the Embassy of Canada in Mexico, the Embassy of Mexico in Canada, provincial representatives (AB, ON and QC), and two delegates of the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab.

For the coming year, the EWG discussed opportunities for collaboration under the following themes:

  1. Nature-based solutions to address climate change and conserve biodiversity carried out primarily through the development of a workplan under an existing Canada-Mexico Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Parks Canada and CONANP;
  2. Co-hosting a second edition of the successful illegal trafficking workshop, potentially on sharks and stingrays, with other CPTPP member states; and,
  3. Co-hosting a regional workshop on clean transportation in the Americas.

Additionally, as a crosscutting objective, the EWG agreed to include Youth, Indigenous Peoples and Gender Equality as part of its bilateral environmental cooperation.


Participation of the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab

The Embassy of Canada in Mexico and the Embassy of Mexico in Canada co-created the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab, an initiative to increase collaboration between Canadian and Mexican youth. Over the year 2021, the youth held monthly policy discussions between government officials and young delegates on topics of bilateral interest, including on the topic of environment, which was held in October. The objective for Canada-Mexico Youth Lab representatives is to provide recommendations for the Environment Working Group’s annual work plan. Sumira Bothé, Youth Delegate for Canada and, Andrea Gutiérrez, Youth Delegate for Mexico, delivered a joint presentation on three (3) priority areas for Canada-Mexico environmental cooperation:

  1. Electrifying Society
  2. Land Sovereignty
  3. Eco-labeling

For instance, the two youth delegates recommended for Canada and Mexico to divert the use of fossil fuels towards the creation of electricity grids, recognize the role of Indigenous Peoples as guardians of traditional territory and to seek opportunities to better calculate the carbon footprint of products.

Inclusion of youth, Indigenous Peoples, and gender equality

Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and Mexico’s Secretariat of Foreign Affairs (SRE) have identified the inclusion of youth, Indigenous Peoples, and gender equality as shared bilateral priorities for Canada and Mexico. The objective of this presentation is to outline these three bilateral priorities and to discuss how these can be incorporated into the 2021-2022 work plan as overarching topical priorities, which will guide next year’s work. The expected outcome is to ensure engagement from youth and Indigenous Peoples across the EWG cooperation initiatives, as well as gender equality. As host of the 2021 EWG, Mr. Zerón delivered a presentation discussing the three overarching principles and their respective rationale.

Nature-based solutions to address climate change and conserve biodiversity

The Parks Canada Agency (PCA) and the Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (CONANP) share a Memorandum of Understanding, signed in October 2019. In 2020, both entities were developing a work plan to guide their proposed cooperation. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the work plan and its associated timelines required to be updated. Both the PCA and CONANP provided a status update on the joint work plan and signaled priority areas in which the CMP could serve as a tool to facilitate the implementation of the work plan. Ashley Campbell, Director, Heritage Designations and Programs, Parks Canada and Eduardo Robelo, Deputy Director of Alternative Productive Projects, CONANP, delivered a joint presentation on the 2022- 2023 work plan proposes cooperation under four (4) themes:

  1. Habitat restoration
  2. Environmental awareness-raising and education
  3. Climate change
  4. Coastal marine resources

Among the collaborative activities, the parties will share best practices and knowledge on monitoring priority species, discuss methodologies for the analysis of Blue Carbon sequestration in protected areas, as well as exchange experiences on climate change adaptation in coastal and marine protected areas.

Environmental cooperation through trade agreements

On March 3-4, 2021, ECCC and SEMARNAT co-lead the first Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) Workshop on Combating Illegal Trade of Wildlife Species: Illegal Trade of Turtles and Tortoises. The workshop was successful in securing the participation of over 180 representatives (from 8 out of 11 CPTPP members). As an outcome of the first workshop Canada and Mexico would like to seek the organization of a second edition of the workshop in 2022. Iris Jiménez Castillo, Deputy Director General for International Cooperation, International Affairs Unit, SEMARNAT presented the proposal for a second edition of the workshop with a focus on stingrays and sharks using joint forms of collaboration for the care of marine species, new technologies, exchange experiences, as well as practical case studies. This workshop will seek to strengthen the mechanisms for CPTPP countries to conserve marine species.

Clean transportation

The transition to clean mobility presents an opportunity for the Americas to tackle and address climate change. Nonetheless, the topic of clean transportation solutions continues to lack awareness and incentives. Agustí Bordas-i-Cuscó, Manager, Pan-American Affairs, Americas Division, ECCC delivered a presentation on a joint-led regional dialogue to present clean mobility solutions for the Americas and present opportunities to transition into net-zero transportation solutions. This hybrid event seeks to gather government representatives, experts, and international organizations with expertise on clean transportation to support creating a network to exchange best practices, policies, and knowledge on sustainable transportation and build on their knowledge of key subjects including but not limited to policy, finance and technology solutions.

Future actions

Participation of the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab

Canada and Mexico thanked the youth delegates for their interventions and recognized the importance of youth involvement in advancing common sustainability goals. Both Co-chairs highlighted specific policy actions in which Canada and Mexico have worked domestically and internationally to address the three policy areas highlighted in their presentation. Both Canada and Mexico, recognized the importance of international targets to attain greenhouse emission reduction and that these will be priority focus. The parties recognized the work of the North American Commission for Environmental Cooperation’s (CEC) Traditional Environmental Knowledge Expert Group (TEKEG) in advancing Indigenous perspectives in trilateral work with the United States. The Co-chairs emphasized that the EWG will ensure the inclusion of youth, Indigenous Peoples and gender equality will remain a priority.

Inclusion of youth, Indigenous Peoples, and gender equality

Canada and Mexico agreed that the inclusion of youth, Indigenous Peoples and gender perspectives will be overarching principles in our environmental cooperation. Both countries will ensure that the appropriate representation of these groups is reflected in the design and implementation of any bilateral undertakings. The parties agreed on amplifying best practices from domestic and regional initiatives such as Mexico’s "Territory Guardians Program", the "José Revueltas” educational center in the Marías Islands, Canada’s experience with GBA+ analysis, the Indigenous Guardians program and the environment education initiative being developed under the framework of the CEC. Parties also agreed to establish a mechanism to measure representative participation in activities jointly developed and implemented by both countries.

Nature-based solutions to address climate change and conserve biodiversity

As a next step, PCA and CONANP will finalize the work plan and establish a calendar of activities to support the 2022-2023 work plan, by first establishing a priority-specific meeting between subject-matter experts. Both agencies will also find opportunities to complement trilateral work with the United States and align aspects of the work plan with other initiatives. Cooperation activities are estimated to start in the first trimester of 2022. The Environment Working Group, specifically SEMARNAT and ECCC, will support the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding sharing expertise, facilitate information and knowledge exchange on biodiversity, climate change, and promote public environmental education, particularly through the involvement of Indigenous and local communities on protected areas.

Environmental cooperation through trade agreements

Canada and Mexico will collaborate in the delivery of a second virtual workshop on the illegal trade of protected species to be held virtually during the spring of 2022. This will be an opportunity to, once again, showcase Canada and Mexico’s co-leadership on environment and trade, particularly amongst CPTPP members. Canada will conduct internal consultations within ECCC and Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) on the proposed topic. Following the completion of the consultations, Canada and Mexico will jointly develop a concept note and seek the interest of other CPTPP members.

Clean transportation

Canada and Mexico also agreed to work together to hold a regional Clean Transportation workshop with partners in the Americas. The proposed workshop will seek to advance Canadian and Mexican priorities related to climate change, clean air and sustainable transportation. Canada and Mexico agreed that as part of their next steps for the development of this initiative will finalize the development of the event’s concept note with the input from both Canada and Mexico, secure a date and venue for the event and develop a topical agenda and identify the respective speakers and stakeholders.

Challenges and opportunities

The EWG facilitated a successful virtual session, which benefitted from the participation of a wide range of experts. Over 50 participants from both Canada and Mexico, with different areas of expertise, attended the working group meeting. The 2021 edition of the EWG recorded the highest number of participants in its history. The diverse group of participants allowed for informative discussions that led to the identification of opportunities for synergies among attendees.

The COVID-19 global pandemic was identified as an underlying challenge for the bilateral and regional engagements of the Canada-Mexico Partnership. Both parties agreed that, during 2022, these engagements would be limited to virtual engagements and travel will be considered whenever appropriate and following health and travel guidelines.

The activities identified will contribute to the strengthening of institutional capacities to face emerging environmental and climate change challenges.

Forestry Working Group

Canadian Co-chair

Monique Frison

Director General, Trade, Economics and Industry Branch
Canadian Forest Service (CFS)

Mexican Co-chair

Camilo Oviedo Bautista
Head of the International Affairs and Financing Promotion Unit
National Forestry Commission (CONAFOR)

Introduction and objectives

The Working Group on Forestry was continuously active throughout the year, with notable success in the priority area of wildland fire management collaboration. There is consensus in the Working Group that the Canada-Mexico Partnership provides an important institutional mechanism to systematize cooperation, convene and strengthen partnerships, and promote the integration of science and policy. Thanks to this collaboration, the working group has exchanged information, human resources, and contributed to the strengthening of technical capacities in priority areas of work for both countries.

The WG on Forestry also noted the IX North American Leaders' Summit held on November 18th, 2021 and the fundamental role of forests in generating a green, equitable and inclusive economic recovery as well as meeting conservation targets

The Working Group on Forestry held meetings throughout the year and on November 25, 2021, convened experts from Canada and Mexico to report on the three priority areas of collaboration for 2020-2021. Priority areas for 2022-23 were also identified and representatives of the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab were given the opportunity to present and propose areas of collaboration.

Priority areas of work reported by the Working Group on Forestry include:

  1. Forest carbon accounting
  2. Wildland fire management
  3. Building with wood
  4. New areas of collaboration


Forest carbon accounting

It was recognized that during 2021 exchanges and concrete actions between Canada and Mexico were limited in this area. However, the Annual Meeting provided the opportunity for both countries to share information and activities developed and carried out in their respective countries. This exchange resulted in a starting point to reactivate Forest Carbon accounting collaboration in 2022.

Canada briefly presented the history of bilateral collaboration, noting that over the past 12 years they have conducted training workshops and developed numerous publications with different government agencies. They also presented relevant information on the Generic Carbon Budget Model (GCBM) and examples of its application, highlighting collaboration with U.S. partners, and noting that recent collaboration with Mexico was carried out tri-nationally within the Commission for Environmental Cooperation.

Canada highlighted some lessons learned, particularly the need for long-term commitments, the importance of open-source tools and local technical expertise and capacity. In addition, potential next steps for bilateral collaboration were suggested, including:

Mexico presented CONAFOR's actions regarding the evaluation of climate change mitigation in the Mexican forest sector – in particular, two (2) aspects:

  1. the reduction of CO2 emissions from avoided deforestation due to the implementation of institutional programs, such as the incorporation of areas in forest management and the payment for forest services program, and
  2. the increase in forest carbon stocks in areas incorporated into sustainable forest management. The presentation emphasized the methodology of the assessment and specific results in terms of emission reductions and mitigation benefits, as well as Mexico's next steps and commitments.

The presentations clearly demonstrated forest carbon accounting remains a priority for both countries, with innovative work continuing in both Canada and Mexico. In this context, the focus of the Working Group for 2022 will be to align and re-establish synergies for mutual benefit.

Wildland fire management

Within the framework of the Memorandum of Understanding for the Exchange of Wildland Fire Management Resources between Canadian and Mexican participants, in 2021, the Operating Plan was updated and signed under which Mexico supported wildland firefighting in Canada through 2 deployments of firefighters and 1 deployment of technical personnel to the Central Office of the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre (CIFFC). The first deployment occurred from July 17th to September 4th, to the province of Ontario; the second from July 23th to September 11th, to the province of British Columbia; and the mobilization of the technician to CIFFC in Winnipeg, Manitoba occurred from July 6th to August 25th.

Canada made four (4) presentations on:

  1. the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding and Operating Plan, in which they presented a report on the deployment of fighters from Mexico to support wildland firefighting in Ontario and British Columbia;
  2. the promotion of equity, diversity and inclusion in wildland fire management in that country;
  3. the progress of the WildFireSat initiative; and
  4. the update of the Next Generation Canadian Wildfire Danger Rating System.

Additionally, Canada reaffirmed their appreciation for Mexico's assistance during the 2021 fire season, with a total support of 202 personnel in Ontario, British Columbia and the CIFFC headquarters in Manitoba. Also acknowledged were the extra efforts to enable efficient and safe deployments, especially given the added complexities associated with COVID-19 and operational isolation requirements.

Mexico shared updates on the joint work carried out with Canada, highlighting the update and signing of the Operating Plan in April 2021, as well as updates on their online tool called the System for the Selection of Forest Fighters for International Deployments (SISECOIF). They also shared information on the fire season in the country during 2021.

They also highlighted the participation of Mexican personnel in the courses: "S-290 Intermediate Fire Behavior" and "SCI-100 Introduction to the Incident Command System", the progress of the Forest Fire Danger Prediction System in Mexico and the participation of various Mexican institutions in the WildFireSat initiative.

Building with wood

The results of the collaboration carried out in 2021 were presented, including the technical and programmatic seminar held in February 2021 in which both countries shared their strengths and experiences in building with wood.

During the seminar, Canada focused on its wood construction programs, education, innovation and technology, and its wood culture. Mexico, for its part, emphasized the existing barriers to the development of the wood construction industry, as well as some of the results of the actions carried out by CONAFOR to promote the subject.

The goals of this area of work were achieved, and it was agreed that exploring further exchanges was not a priority for the time being. The topic was concluded within the framework of the WG on Forestry.

New areas of collaboration

It was agreed to hold further discussions within the WG on Forestry to explore the possibility of including "Nature-based solutions to climate change" as an area of collaboration within the CMP.

Canada-Mexico Youth Lab

During the meeting, representatives of the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab were given the opportunity to present and propose areas of collaboration. During their intervention, the COVID-19 pandemic was noted as a driver for reflection and prioritizing the importance of reconnecting with nature. In this regard, a recommendation was put forward to promote initiatives such as forest bathing/therapy, aimed at bringing people to forests and forests to people; increasing nature and adventure tourism; and promoting jobs in forest management. Mechanisms to implement such initiatives were also presented such as through Canada-Mexico training and mentoring programs; working with the youth of local communities to empower them and promote sustainable forest management; as well as through promoting forest/science work experience for youth in national forest institutions such as CONAFOR and NRCan-CFS.

It was agreed that the members of the WG on Forestry will attend an upcoming meeting of the Youth Lab to further define at least one activity to move forward together. To begin with, synergies will be explored with the Green Mentoring Program that has been launched by the World Forestry Congress Secretariat in collaboration with the Learning Tree Project of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative of Canada.

Future actions

Forest Carbon Accounting

It was agreed to hold a meeting between the technical areas of Canada and Mexico and inviting SilvaCarbon in order to agree on a work plan and subsequently inform the Co-chairs of the Working Group on Forestry.

Wildfire Management
  1. In-person meeting for the signing of the 2022 Operating Plan;
  2. Real-time training for capacity building in Mexico leveraging resources from both countries;
  3. Actively promote the exchange of technical and scientific information;
  4. Improve standard operating procedures between Mexico and Canadian fire agencies for future deployments;
  5. Support the commitment to address discrimination through organizational learning. One way to do this will be to invite Mexico to participate in an event on equity, diversity and inclusion organized by the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre in March 2022.

Challenges and opportunities

The Working Group on Forestry does not have a fixed budget or dedicated full-time staff; it operates with the existing human and financial resources of the member institutions. In this context, it is necessary to consider the circumstances of the participating institutions in order to take advantage of existing resources, as well as the capacity and willingness to collaborate in mutual areas of interest, seeking to consider the views of young people and carry out activities with a gender perspective.

Mexican participants
  1. Camilo Oviedo Bautista
    Head of International Affairs and Financing Promotion, CONAFOR
  2. Pedro Antonio Plateros Gastelum
    General Coordinator of Production and Productivity, CONAFOR
  3. José Armando Alanís de la Rosa
    Manager of the National Forest Monitoring System, CONAFOR
  4. Eduardo Cruz Castañeda
    Manager of Fire Management, CONAFOR
  5. Juan Manuel Villa Mejía
    Operations Deputy Manager, CONAFOR
  6. Irma Karina López Sánchez
    Manager of International Cooperation, CONAFOR
  7. Jacqueline Aguilar Baca
    Deputy Manager of International Cooperation, CONAFOR
  8. Daniela Lince Romero
    Liaison of International Cooperation, CONAFOR
  9. Marcela Olguín Álvarez
    External Consultant, SilvaCarbon
  10. María de los Ángeles Soriano Luna
    Specialist in modeling for the analysis of mitigation in the forest sector, CONAFOR
Canadian participants

Human Capital Working Group

Canadian Co-chair

Jennifer Daubeny
Executive Director of International Education
Global Affairs Canada (GAC)

Mexican Co-chair

Gloria Sandoval Salas
General Director of Foreign Project Execution
Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation (AMEXCID, SRE)     

Introduction and objectives

Due to the health situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Governments of Canada and Mexico held the 17th Annual Meeting of the Human Capital Working Group remotely on November 25, 2021, for the purpose of presenting the efforts of each country in terms of educational cooperation, student mobility and academic exchange.

Mexico hosted this year’s meeting, which was headed by Act. Gloria Sandoval Salas, General Director of Foreign Project Execution (DGEPE) of the Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation (AMEXCID). The Canadian delegation was led by Ms. Jennifer Daubeny, Executive Director of International Education at Global Affairs Canada.

The Working Group took place in an atmosphere of solidarity and dynamism, in accordance with the agenda and topics previously agreed upon by the parties.

As part of the opening ceremony, the Co-chairs from the two countries highlighted the importance of the Human Capital Working Group as a key mechanism and high-level forum for promoting educational cooperation between the two countries, establishing common development goals and objectives, and jointly responding to the challenges facing the North American region and today's world.

The Co-chairs from the two countries were pleased with the broad participation and level of representation of key stakeholders from the education sector in each country, drawing attention to the presence and participation of government officials (at the national, state and local levels), the private sector and civil society. Over 80 Mexican and Canadian participants attended virtually.

The two Co-chairs pointed out that as a result of the meeting, efforts will be made to renew the commitments and good will of both countries, in order to define a roadmap and a plan of action for 2022 that will contribute to access to quality, inclusive and equitable education, as well as international mobility and academic exchanges by Canadian and Mexican nationals.


Overview of education and student mobility in Mexico and Canada

As the first item on the agenda, the Co-chairs presented an overview of the education sector in each country. It was recognized that the international health situation has had a negative impact on the education arena representing great challenges such as the interruption and modification of the teaching and learning modalities. 

These measures have had an impact on equal access to quality education, the overall development and human capital of individuals, and academic mobility and exchanges for nationals from both countries. According to data from 2020, Mexico ranked tenth in terms of international students in Canada and, more specifically, second amongst the Latin American countries.  However, the health situation reduced both the number of Mexican students in Canada as well as their length of stay.

However, recognizing the importance of relations between the countries, both Co-chairs noted the necessity of promoting and redoubling efforts to resume educational cooperation and academic exchange actions.

On this topic, the need to opt for alternative solutions and innovative mechanisms for education, for example, involving Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and digital mediawere mentioned.

Reference was also made to the possibility of resuming student mobility once the health situation improves. This would mean adhering to the biosecurity protocols of both countries, including entry and stay requirements, as well as vaccination policies.

The restarting of student mobility would provide an opportunity to expand and renew the educational offerings of both countries, giving greater priority to the areas of study that are currently in demand for the development of each nation and in accordance with the international context.

Finally, it was deemed necessary to contribute to access to educational opportunities by population groups that have suffered greater impacts as a result of the pandemic, or whose situation of risk, exclusion and vulnerability has worsened. Therefore, the relevance of promoting educational programs and initiatives aimed at youth, women, Indigenous Peoples and migrants, among other priority population sectors, was identified.

Presentation of the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab

The Canada-Mexico Youth Lab, an effort promoted by the Embassies of both countries that seeks to strengthen collaboration between young nationals of Mexico and Canada, participated in and addressed the HCWG for the first time.

At the 17th Annual Meeting of the Human Capital Working Group, four representatives of the Lab presented an initiative for academic and labour linkages between young people, educational institutions and labour authorities in both countries, via a virtual platform.

Presentation of programs and calls for proposals in the area of student mobility

As a key space for dialogue, the representatives of the Canadian and Mexican education sectors presented educational cooperation and academic exchange initiatives:

  1. that have been implemented previously;
  2. that are currently in force or being implemented;
  3. that could potentially be carried out bilaterally as of 2022.

During the session, interventions were made mainly by higher education institutions, associations, and education consortiums from Canada and Mexico. In both cases, educational and academic exchange programs were presented for the realization of technical, vocational, higher education programs, language teaching, among other initiatives.

The Canadian and Mexican participants expressed their interest in the initiative, asking various questions and making comments via the virtual platform. It was also suggested that other actors should be involved in implementing the portal and that the Youth Lab proposal should be more widely disseminated.

Despite the presentation of diverse bilateral academic offerings, the participants specifically noted that due to the health situation, some of the initiatives had been suspended or cancelled.

However, they expressed interest, should the conditions improve, in the feasibility of reactivating some academic programs and resuming student mobility, taking into account contingency and health measures at all times. They also referred to ICTs and digital media as innovative tools and alternatives for the development and continuity of academic exchange.

Presentation of academic linkage and inclusion initiatives between Mexico and Canada

In a similar context, the representatives of Canadian and Mexican institutions presented initiatives and affirmative actions to reduce educational gaps and promote inclusive, equitable education, as well as equal opportunity access and means of learning.

This section resulted in the presentation of academic mobility and exchange programs aimed at vulnerable population groups such as women, Indigenous Peoples, and young people, among others.

The Canadian and Mexican representatives emphasized the need to redouble efforts in favour of these population groups, which efforts could be set out in the 2022 Action Plan.

With respect to linkage actions, different Mexican institutions referred to the initiatives implemented with the Province of Quebec, as well as those developed within the framework of Public-Private Partnerships such as MITACs, and other Canadian Universities consortiums, like Caldo, Calareo, and Languages Canada.

Closing of the XVII Meeting of the Canada-Mexico Human Capital Working Group

Following the presentations, the Co-chairs closed the 17th Annual Meeting of the Human Capital Working Group, thanking the Canadian and Mexican members for their participation, and acknowledging that the development of this edition had exceeded the goals initially set, and resulted in a high-level dialogue and understanding between the countries.

The participating institutions were also encouraged to ensure that the educational initiatives presented, as well as the interests and possible commitments expressed, materialize in the course of the Action Plan in 2022 with a view to continuing to promote and strengthen educational cooperation and bilateral academic exchange, despite the current situation.

It was unequivocally expressed that the work of the Human Capital Working Group is another example of the sustained and enriching cooperation between Canada and Mexico, and that it reflects the shared commitment to achieving sustainable development of their nations and the North American region, as well as responding to global challenges.

Future actions

As a deliverable of the Human Capital Working Group Meeting, the parties expressed their commitment to define a 2022 Action Plan that will contribute to access to quality, inclusive and equitable education, based on mobility and academic exchange programs that could be offered to nationals of both countries. In this regard, special emphasis was placed on prioritizing the offer in the areas of study that are in demand for each nation as well as for the population groups that are most vulnerable, such as women, youth and Indigenous Peoples, among others.

To that end, the Working Group participants agreed to:

Challenges and opportunities

In recognition of the will of the members of the 17th Meeting of the Human Capital Working Group and in order to achieve the goals and objectives to be set out in the 2022 Action Plan, the following challenges have been identified and will need to be addressed with constant monitoring, dialogue and decision-making:

In order to record progress and areas of opportunity in compliance with the 2022 Action Plan, it has been proposed that indicators be defined and that semi-annual follow-up actions/meetings be held.

Mining Working Group

Canadian Co-chair

Kimberly Lavoie
Director General
Natural Resources Canada (NRCan)

Mexican Co-chair

José Rafael Jabalera Batista
Director General Of Mining Development
Secretariat of Economy (SE)        

Introduction and objectives

The meeting of the Mining Working Group took place on November 23, 2021, via videoconference.

The meeting discussed how the mining sector is a key component for the recovery of the economy after the COVID-19 pandemic and one of the main drivers to re-establish production. The mining sector is the pillar of many industries, large amounts of metals will be required for this transition. It is the duty of the Mexican government to promote a responsible economy, with respect for the environment and local communities, while ensuring the workers’ safety. Social and environmental impacts are key components for sustainable development.

The Canadian counterpart recognizes Mexico as one of its most important mining partners. It is essential to work collaboratively between partners. Governments and industry must work to ensure that supply chains are sustainable. Each country can contribute to issues of its value chain by allowing community development and creating an understanding of what each country needs. The most important part of this cycle is to seek solutions, have a qualified workforce and have an integrated business that will guarantee success.


In the first segment of the meeting, the Canadian counterpart offered a mine safety workshop with specialists from Agnico Eagle, Torex Gold, Cementation, Symboticware and BBA Consultants, among others. This workshop attracted a lot of interest with an audience of approximately 65 people. For the first time, the invitation was extended to mining companies.

During the workshop it was discussed how the overview on mining safety has changed since the seventies, from a vision of "accidents happen" to a bottom-up preventive safety culture across the company where not only the technical aspects are considered, but also the human element as a fundamental factor in accident prevention.

There was talk of the 4-layer risk model, which was introduced in the mining legislation in 2017. The Mining Association of Canada presented its eight protocols covering different topics with 31 indicators, highlighting the health and safety protocol. This protocol is a guide to complete health and safety performance evaluations with five indicators. Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) is a globally recognized sustainability program that supports mining companies in managing environmental and social risks. Between 60% and 70% of the mines are part of the TSM. The Canadian counterpart expressed its intention to bring the program to Mexico in collaboration with the Mexican Mining Chamber.

In the second segment of the meeting, issues relevant to Mexico were discussed such as the energy reform, the Indigenous and social consultation, and the policies promoted by the Mexican federal government to work towards a mining industry that is not only modern and safe, but also sustainable.

The Mexican Geological Survey presented the current status of the exploration of lithium deposits, the progress in terms of social and indigenous consultation, and the Homologated Inventory of Tailings Dams that has been discussed with the Mexican Secretariat of Environment (SEMARNAT).

The Intergovernmental Forum on Mineral Resources (IGF) Coordinator for Latin America presented the preliminary results of a mining policy assessment that was carried out in conjunction with the Mexican Secretariat of Economy. Its purpose is to assess how good governance policies are applied in Mexico’s mining sector. This evaluates aspects such as environmental management, optimization of financial benefits of mining or the transition to the closure stage in the life of a mine. One of the aspects considered in this report is the optimization of socioeconomic benefits of the mining industry including gender equity. The report pointing out that although one of the strengths of the sector is the existence of regulations that promote labor equality and educational training of people, as a weakness it is identified that there is no uniformity in terms of design and application of gender policies.

Future actions

It was agreed to continue monitoring the topics discussed in the workshop and to explore ways of collaboration with the Mexican Mining Chamber. It was also proposed to work in the coming year on possible measures to promote responsible exploration, mainly with respect to communities and the environment, taking into consideration the results of the mining policy assessment project carried out with the IGF.

Trade, Investment and Innovation Working Group

Canadian Co-chair

Eric Walsh
Director General of Policy and Relations with North America
Ministry of Global Affairs (GAC)

Mexican Co-chair

Lydia Antonio
Director General for International Treaties, Monitoring, Administration and Compliance Oversight
Secretariat of Economy (SE)

Gustavo Santillana
Vice Chairman of the Business Committee
Mexican Business Council of Foreign Trade, Investment and Technology (COMCE)

Introduction and objectives

The Trade, Investment and Innovation Working Group (TIIWG) is one of the eight working groups of the Canada-Mexico Partnership (CMP) which, since 2004, guides bilateral collaboration between Canada and Mexico. It is co-chaired by the General Directorate of North America of Global Affairs Canada, the General Directorate for International Treaties, Monitoring, Administration and Compliance Oversight (DGSASCTC) of the Secretariat of Economy, and the Mexican Council of Foreign Trade, Investment and Technology (COMCE).

The objective of the TIIWG is to strengthen the dialogue between our governments and support the growing needs and activities of Canadian and Mexican companies doing business in the respective markets in addition to promoting collaborative projects between the two governments and the private sector to boost business ties(particularly among MSMEs), trade and investment opportunities, best practices in innovation and technologies to increase the competitiveness and quality of life of the citizens of the two countries.

The meeting of the TIIWG of the Canada-Mexico Partnership was held in person and virtually on November 25, 2021 in Mexico City. Around 40 participants from federal governments, provinces and the private sector attended.

The Co-chairs highlighted the contributions made by all participants and recognized the importance of continuing to deepen our relationship of partners and friends and the new commercial and investment realities within a changing post-pandemic environment.

The Mexican counterpart highlighted the relationship between Canada and Mexico as strategic trading partners. Canada is Mexico's fifth largest trading partner. Mexico recognized the importance of Canadian investments as the third largest source country for foreign direct investment.

One of the lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic was the importance of having competitive and resilient supply chains. Our teams have worked on the implementation of actions aimed at strengthening and enhancing supply chains in North America, promoting the reactivation of our economies with an approach based on the inclusion of small businesses and disadvantaged sectors such as youth, women and Indigenous Peoples in regional value chains.


In the session of the TIIWG, the Canadian counterpart thanked the Secretariat of Economy for the organization of the meeting of the Working Group, emphasized the work that has been done in recent weeks regarding the Canada-Mexico relationship and stressed that the meeting of the North American Leaders' Summit (NALS) was a great opportunity for collaboration on a wide variety of issues and priorities, goals and cooperation strategies for the future.

He remarked that this was the first time the leaders of our countries met in person and had the opportunity to advance their common interests which worked to highlight the depth of our bilateral relationship.

In addition, he pointed out that Secretary Clouthier has met on several occasions with Minister Ng and they have discussed shared priorities on different topics such as SMEs, innovation, climate change, inclusive trade, competitiveness, and supply chains among others. He stressed the importance of the CMP Annual Meeting and especially the TIIWG that serves as an important tool to address the different challenges that arise in the bilateral relationship. He commented that the meeting would allow us to define concrete projects in which we will join forces to strengthen ourselves together.

The COMCE executive highlighted the importance of private sector collaboration in the TIIWG as beingfundamental. He said that although COMCE has bilateral committees in which they work with Canada.The CMP and the TIIWG are fundamental for the creation of innovation and trade. He referred to the importance of the high-level meetings held recently which marks the close relationship between the two countries.

Economic/Political Landscape

Both countries presented the economic and political context of their respective countries, from Canada, Aaron Sydor, director of Economic and Commercial Analysis, Global Affairs Canada and from Mexico, Rodrigo Mariscal, general director of Macroeconomic Analysis of the SHCP, highlighting:


Eric Walsh mentioned that with the elections in Canada (September 20, 2021) there were some changes in the administration \but the Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development, Mary Ng, remains in her position. Each minister receives a mandate letter from Prime Minister Trudeau to align their work with the priorities of the current government which include combating COVID-19, pursuing a green future, ensuring education and health for all, and advancing competitiveness to name a few.

During the presentation on the economic context of Canada, the following points were highlighted:


Lydia Antonio pointed out that it is essential to promote equality and eradicate gender violence. The pandemic has been the focus of activity since last year and one of the government's main objectives has focused on saving lives. Something of interest to report is the progress that has been made in terms of the labour reform and its new structure that is followed punctually by the Secretariat of Labor and Social Welfare, to guarantee free association and collective representativeness of workers.

Rodrigo Mariscal, from the Secretariat of Finance and Public Credit, emphasized that economic activity in Mexico has recovered by 97% since the pandemic began, however, this figure is complicated because not all economic sectors have presented the same recovery. Trade was one of the sectors that took the least time to recover. There are some sectors that are still lagging in terms of growth and competitiveness such as the tourism, restauration and transportation sector which will eventually recover and reach adequate levels of growth.

As for inflation, it is important to note that all countries in the world go through the same thing and Mexico is no exception. The fundamental explanation is that consumption patterns changed radically during the pandemic and those pressures suffer directly in the economy. We also had a period of droughts and floods that also contributed to rising inflation levels. He concluded by mentioning the importance of the country's fiscal stability.

Work carried out by the TIIWG in 2021

Co-chair Lydia Antonio stressed that for the relationship between Canada and Mexico this year was very satisfactory. The visit of the Secretary of Economy Tatiana Clouthier was a great opportunity to follow up on different initiatives. A broad program of activities has been developed including a virtual event during the pandemic, subsequently, the visit of Minister Ng to Mexico to commemorate the anniversary of the CUSMA in which an inclusive trade event was held. She noted that it would be important to have an action plan with quantified goals and priorities. Programs and good practices will have to be taken up again in order to be incorporated into the policies that have been implemented.

She highlighted that Mexico joined Canada in October 2021 in the Inclusive Trade Action Group (ITAG) and its Global Trade and Gender Agreement (GTGA) that covers issues not only inclusive trade, but also gender and foreign trade.

She emphasized that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most of the activities proposed for 2021 were carried out through digital media highlighting the following projects carried out by Mexico in favor of inclusive trade:

  1. The celebration of the second E-roundtable of business MujerExportaMx that linked Mexican women entrepreneurs with buyers from other markets in which a training session to do business with Canada was included;
  2. Inclusive trade event with entrepreneurs from underrepresented groups led by the Secretary of Economy, Tatiana Clouthier, and her counterparts from Canada and the United States within the framework of the commemoration of the first anniversary of the CUSMA held in July in Mexico City;
  3. The convening of meetings of private equity funds organized by the Mexican Association of Private Equity (AMEXCAP) and the Canadian Venture Capital & Private Equity Association (CVCA);
  4. Events on the bilateral trade and investment relationship, with chambers of commerce, associations, states and companies in which the DGSASCTC and the office for the implementation of the CUSMA in Canada participated.
  5. The holding of webinars and videoconferences to promote trade and investment with Canada organized by COMCE;
  6. Mexico's accession in October 2021 to the Inclusive Trade Action Group (ITAG) and its Global Agreement on Trade and Gender (GTAGA) which represents an opportunity to continue strengthening the work that our country is doing in terms of equal inclusion of sectors less favored to foreign trade.
  7. The participation of the Secretariat of Economy in the IncMty festival which this year had Canada as the guest country.

The Canadian projects carried out this year were directed to initiatives focused on:

  1. Networking and investment promotion activity in the technology sector in the context of the Collision 2021 conference with the participation of 13 Mexican capital funds; and meetings and presentations of Canadian pension funds at the annual AMEXCAP Summit;
  2. Business missions which took place in recent weeks on aerospace, oil and gas, and clean technologies;
  3. An inclusive trade forum that the Embassy of Canada in Mexico organized in accompaniment with the Secretariat of Economy, including a multisectoral business mission for 11 companies of underrepresented groups (self-identified as owned by (5) women, (5) indigenous, (2) LGBTQ+, (1) youth). The Forum was attended by high-level representatives of the ministries of international trade of both countries, WEConnect International, the Mexican Federation of LGBT+ Entrepreneurs, and the Quebec Women Entrepreneurs Network, in which they were also given a couple of sessions on how to do business in Canada and Mexico.
  4. The progress of the Canadian Technology Accelerator program of the Embassy of Canada since its implementation in 2019 was presented which received cohorts of participants in sectors such as agro-technology, smart cities, and digital health by 2022.

The importance of having the presence of the Canada-Mexico Youth Lab was highlighted, indeed, the latter made a presentation highlighting 4 proposals:

  1. Youth CMP Dialogue Table: formation of a joint table made up of youth delegates and CMP authorities;
  2. Empowerment of young women entrepreneurs: training program for young women entrepreneurs in Canada and Mexico providing legal, technical and financial support, including business courses;
  3. Canada - Mexico Business Incubator: business program that helps beginner entrepreneurs develop a business model with foundations and helps strategic connections. A bilateral program for citizens could have a great impact on start-ups;
  4. Youth entrepreneurship conference

Future actions

Work Program 2022

Both sides presented preliminary lists of possible trade, investment and innovation projects that could be carried out in 2022. While the projects were reviewed quickly, some still need to be further developed. Both sides agreed on the importance of carrying out initiatives that support underrepresented SMEs and export groups, including women entrepreneurs, Indigenous Peoples, and the LGBTQI+ community.

The Mexican delegation presented 12 initiatives related to activities to promote the participation of women in regional trade, support the entrepreneurship of MSMEs, from underrepresented groups, as well as the exchange of best practices in innovation by linking industrial innovation centers in Mexico with innovation hubs in Canada.

It was proposed to promote trade and investment opportunities between Mexican states and to promote opportunities for Canadian investors through AMEXCAP.

The Canadian delegation stressed the importance of focusing on a few joint initiatives proposing the following themes and activities:

  1. continuing the momentum created in the private equity sector and organizing a mission of Mexican funds to Canada with AMEXCAP and another activity with pension funds;
  2. repeat an activity on the topic of inclusive trade;
  3. collaborate in the Canadian Technology Accelerator program;
  4. hold a summit of Canadian and Mexican CEOs where he could eventually join with the Can-Mex Youth Lab.

Challenges and opportunities

The TIIWG will continue to work in a coordinated manner to carry out the agreed initiatives through an inclusive approach taking into account sectors that were previously excluded from the benefits of a trade-oriented strategy. In order to develop a new growth strategy, Mexico will continue with the task of including projects that maintain the inclusion of women, youth, Indigenous populations and entrepreneurs as a transversal axis.

The Canada-Mexico Partnership is an important cooperation mechanism to continue strengthening the commercial and collaborative relationship between both countries and allows us to position ourselves as partners and friends at the regional level.

Date Modified: