Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Mexico to build cooperation with Brunei in eco-tourism

By James Kon

Mexico, the 9th largest trading power in the world is looking to build cooperation with Brunei Darussalam in the fields of eco-tourism and food products.

The visiting Ambassador of Mexico, Mr Juan Jose Gomez, was in the Sultanate for a day to promote the importance of Mexican economy and to increase Mexico's participation in business, investment and trade with the government of Brunei Darussalam, prominent local businessmen and Chambers of Commerce.

The Consulado De Mexico (Adinin Group of Companies) in Brunei Darussalam hosted a lunch presentation on Trade and Investment Opportunities in Mexico by Mr Juan Jose Gomez at the Portview Restaurant yesterday. Also present was Mr Salomon Sacal, Senior Trade Commissioner of ProMexico.

In an interview with the Ambassador of Mexico, he said, "My visit is to try to strengthen the ties between Mexico and Brunei Darussalam, which by the way is already very positive and strong. We have long standing friendship between both governments and we believe these ties can be strengthened and grown further."

He highlighted, "Politically, our dialogue is very positive and on the economic side, we can do some interesting things. I had a few meetings with a number of officials and some of the issues that came up are tourism and cooperation between both countries in various sectors especially eco-tourism.

"Mexico is the eighth largest tourism destination in the world, so we not only strengthen the exchange of tourists in both countries but we can also exchange cooperation and help to develop this sector where Brunei is trying hard to develop its eco-tourism industry. We also discussed other issues like Halal products and food production.

"Mexico is a very large country with a population of 110 million people. It's the 13th largest economy in the world and one of the most important locations for FDI. It offers lots of opportunity for Brunei and vice versa," he added.

In addition to the food industry and eco-tourism, he cited other potential areas of cooperation is the oil and gas industry.

Mr Juan Jose Gomez said, "We are going to make an important presentation on Mexico today to the local business community especially the opportunities in Mexico. Currently, Mexico is prioritising in building infrastructures and has invested more than US$300 billion in developing ports, airport, power supply and highways. This is one area where investors can have lots of business opportunities and we want to see what kind of opportunities we can build with the local investors.

"In addition, we are also looking for FDI in Brunei in areas of tourism and food industry where we can explore further."

He added, "I think Mexico can also help Brunei in its diversification drive. We have vast experience in that area because Mexico was an oil producing country many decades ago and had the same dilemma. We were able to diversify successfully and now our revenue is less than 15 per cent and 70 per cent of GDP comes from services. Our international trade has reached up to US$500 billion, bigger than all North America combined."

Also present at the luncheon were prominent businessmen and figures in local business associations.

Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin

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