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The government has implemented a new scheme for certified companies, reflecting consolidated programmes such as the Customs-Trade Partnership against Terrorism in the United States and Canada's Partners in Protection. The scheme aims to facilitate many aspects of customs dispatch and improve competitiveness - many companies with a high volume of foreign trade have already expressed their interest.
During the Senate's last session of 2011 the free trade agreement between Mexico and Peru was approved by a slim majority. The agreement with Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua was unanimously approved. Other significant amendments include further changes to the Foreign Trade Rules, export control forms and activities subject to export control permits.
In 2008 Mexico and China reached an agreement to eliminate anti-dumping duties on Chinese goods under 953 tariff headings and establish transitional duties for over 200 tariff categories. As the end of the phase-out approaches, many industrial sectors have demanded strong action against low-price imports from China. The government's next steps will prove crucial.
Until recently, Mexico lacked an export control regime for conventional weapons, dual-use goods and software and technologies that pose a risk of interception. However, a resolution has recently come into force which seeks to prevent the manufacture and proliferation of conventional weapons and weapons of mass destruction.
The president has signed the Maquiladora Tax Decree, which provides for an extension of the fixed-rate corporate tax stimulus that was originally scheduled to expire in 2011. The decision is welcome, as the ability to apply the relevant fixed-rate corporate tax benefit in fiscal years 2012 and 2013 provides greater certainty for foreign investors.
Mexico and Colombia announced that they have renegotiated their free trade agreement in light of the withdrawal of Venezuela. The FTA-G3 agreement, which has been in force for the past 15 years, is now known as FTA-G2. Amendments have been published whereby goods imported to and from Mexico and Colombia are deemed exempt from duties, with certain exceptions.