MEXICO CITY (AP) — The United States (US) Chamber of Commerce said on Friday that Mexico’s attempts to limit private electricity generation would violate the US-Mexico-Canada trade agreement (USMCA).
The business group urged the withdrawal of a bill by Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to give priority in electricity purchases to older, more polluting, state-owned power plants.
It said the bill would “would directly contravene Mexico’s commitments” under the USMCA.
The chamber’s Senior Vice President of the Americas Neil Herrington said in a statement that the bill could re-instate a government monopoly, adding “these changes would significantly raise the cost of electricity and limit access to clean energy for Mexico’s citizens”.
“Unfortunately, this move is the latest in a pattern of troubling decisions taken by the Government of Mexico that have undermined the confidence of foreign investors in the country,” Herrington wrote.
Mexico vowed on Thursday to forge ahead with the bill, even after Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled against López Obrador’s previous attempt to block permits for renewable power plants.
Interior Secretary Olga Sánchez Cordero said the court ruling applied only to a 2020 executive order, and suggested the administration would wage a new court battle over another bill the president sent to Congress early this month.