COVID-19: The Mexican government warns inspection and eventual closure of non-essential businesses that continue operations
The Mexican government published on March 31st an agreement on the extraordinary actions to face the COVID-19 sanitary emergency, which determines the suspension of non-essential activities until April 30th. The document also enlists the following activities officially considered essential in Mexico:
• All health and medical-related activities, including manufacturing and supply services of medical resources;
• Public security and protection, administration of justice, and legislative activity at the federal and local levels;
• Public social programs’ operations; and
• Provision and maintenance of public utilities such as water, electricity, gas, petroleum, gasoline, basic sanitation, public transport, medical infrastructure, among others.
Additionally, the sectors and industries considered as essential for the Economy are:
• Tax revenue;
• Energy resources’ distribution and sale;
• Gasoline stations and gas;
• Water distribution;
• Food and non-alcoholic beverages;
• Food markets;
• Passenger and cargo transportation;
• Primary sectors’ production;
• Chemical industry and cleaning products;
• Hardware stores;
• Post services;
• Private security services;
• Nurseries and childcare;
• Retirement homes;
• Refuges and attention centers for women victims of violence and their children;
• Telecommunications and news media;
• Emergency private services;
• Funeral services;
• Storage of and cold chain services for essential supplies;
• Airports, ports, and railways
Furthermore, on April 6th, the government published another agreement on the technical guidelines related to other public utilities and economic activities the suspension of which may have irreversible effects on their continuity. This document added the following essential activities:
• Information technology services;
• Delivery services related to e-commerce enterprises and platforms;
• Steel, cement and glass production; and
• Coal mines and distributors.
For the authorization of the two latter activities to take effect, the enterprises related to those activities had to submit to the Mexican Ministry of Economy (Secretaría de Economía) a registration of the total employees needed to maintain a minimal level of activities.
Note that all businesses with activities catalogued as essential can continue operations on the condition of following sanitary practices to prevent the spread and infection of Coronavirus in their workplaces.
In this context, the Mexican government recently exhibited that 15% of businesses with activities considered as non-essential, mostly located in the center and north of Mexico, were still operating, 25% of which belong to the automotive sector. Other businesses that continued their operations without authorization belong to industries such as the textile, timber, aerospace, machining, paper, tobacco, and building ones, among others. Therefore, the government warned that all those enterprises with activities catalogued as non-essential which continue operations will be subject to health-and-safety-at-work inspections and eventual closure.
For further information (in Spanish and German) please visit the German-Mexican Chamber of Industry and Commerce (CAMEXA) webpage.
The official agreement on extraordinary actions due to COVID-19 (in Spanish) can be found here.
The technical guidelines related to some essential activities listed in the agreement on extraordinary actions (in Spanish) can be found here.