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Op-Ed

What Will the Proposed Telecom Overhaul Mean for Mexico?

Andrés Rozental

In his first 100 days in office, President Peña Nieto has successfully garnered widespread political support for various reform packages that had been pending from previous administrations. Education and labor reforms were the first to be approved by Congress and in the case of the former is now constitutionally law.

The telecommunications reform package has won approval in the lower house of Congress and now must pass the Senate and be ratified by the states before becoming part of the Constitution. Rather than being specifically targeted at any individual company, the reform is designed to open the sector to competition and to guarantee Mexicans access to services that up to now have been expensive and oligopolistic in nature. Measures such as opening up national television to additional channels, wider broadband coverage and a stricter regulatory regime are all designed to fundamentally change Mexico’s telecoms structure. When finally approved, these changes will greatly benefit the Mexican economy by generating competition and additional players in the sector.

All indications are that this reform package will be approved, perhaps with congressional modifications. Although there has been opposition by some in the PAN to parts of the proposal, the other parties are agreed on the majority of the changes. This augurs well for further proposals that Peña Nieto plans to send to Congress in the coming months, especially the energy and fiscal reforms that are so necessary for Mexico to guarantee future growth and prosperity.

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