Mexico flag Mexico: Economic and Political Overview

Foreign trade figures of Mexico

Foreign Trade in Figures

Mexico is highly dependent on foreign trade, which represented 83.6% of its GDP in 2021 (World Bank, latest available data). The country mainly exports cars (14.3%), automatic data-processing machines (6.7%), vehicle parts (6.2%), petroleum oils (4.8%), and monitors and projectors (3.2%). As for imports, Mexico’s main purchases include parts and accessories for motor vehicles (5.1%), petroleum oils (4.9%), electronic integrated circuits (4.3%), petroleum gas (3.1%), and telephone sets (2.7%). According to IMF Foreign Trade Forecasts, the volume of exports of goods and services increased by 6.9% in 2022 and is expected to decrease by 0.5% in 2023, while the volume of imports of goods and services increased by 5.4% in 2022 and is expected to increase by 0.5% in 2023.

Mexico is heavily dependent on the commercial relations with its main trading partner – the United States – which account for more than three-quarters of the country’s exports. Other destinations for Mexican exports include Canada, China, Germany, and Japan. As per imports, the main origins include the US, China, South Korea, Germany, and Japan. Mexico has signed a dozen free-trade agreements with about forty different countries of the world. Other trade advantages of Mexico include the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement (which replaced NAFTA in 2020), its free-trade agreement with the European Union since 2000, a trade agreement with Japan since 2005 and the 2012 foundation of the Pacific Alliance along with Colombia, Chile and Peru.

Although Mexico's trade balance is structurally negative, the country has been seeing a trade surplus in recent years. In 2021, exports of goods and services increased by 6.9%, reaching USD 522 billion; while imports decreased by 13.6%, reaching USD 561 billion - taking trade balance to a deficit of USD 22 billion. That was largely due to the continued strength of the automotive industry - both motor vehicles and motor vehicle parts - and the increase of Mexican exports to the United States.

 
Foreign Trade Values 20172018201920202021
Imports of Goods (million USD) 432,179476,546467,342393,248522,455
Exports of Goods (million USD) 409,433450,713460,704417,670494,765
Imports of Services (million USD) 36,77537,43537,01825,04338,656
Exports of Services (million USD) 27,01228,57931,33616,80327,312

Source: World Trade Organisation (WTO) ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Indicators 20172018201920202021
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 77.180.677.976.983.6
Trade Balance (million USD) -10,984-13,7685,16834,151-10,915
Trade Balance (Including Service) (million USD) -20,460-24,707-2,73522,908-22,516
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 6.46.4-0.7-13.813.6
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 4.26.01.5-7.36.9
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 39.541.339.137.442.6
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 37.739.338.839.541.1

Source: World Bank ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Forecasts 20222023 (e)2024 (e)2025 (e)2026 (e)
Volume of exports of goods and services (Annual % change) 9.61.30.22.53.0
Volume of imports of goods and services (Annual % change) 10.23.42.62.62.7

Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook ; Latest available data

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 
International Economic Cooperation
Mexico is a member of the following international economic organisations: IMF, North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), OECD, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), ICC, G-3, G-15, G-20, G-24, WTO, among others. For the full list of economic and other international organisations in which participates Mexico click here. International organisation membership of Mexico is also outlined here.
Free Trade Agreements
The complete and up-to-date list of Free Trade Agreements signed by Mexico can be consulted here.
 

Main Partner Countries

Main Customers
(% of Exports)
2022
United States 78.3%
Canada 2.7%
China 1.9%
Germany 1.4%
Japan 0.8%
See More Countries 15.0%
Main Suppliers
(% of Imports)
2022
United States 43.9%
China 19.6%
South Korea 3.7%
Germany 3.1%
Japan 3.0%
See More Countries 26.7%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

Main Products

578.3 bn USD of products exported in 2022
Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally...Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, incl. station wagons and racing cars (excl. motor vehicles of heading 8702) 8.1%
Automatic data-processing machines and units...Automatic data-processing machines and units thereof; magnetic or optical readers, machines for transcribing data onto data media in coded form and machines for processing such data, n.e.s. 7.4%
Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles...Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles for the transport of ten or more persons, motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, motor vehicles for the transport of goods and special purpose motor vehicles of heading 8701 to 8705, n.e.s. 6.6%
Motor vehicles for the transport of goods, incl....Motor vehicles for the transport of goods, incl. chassis with engine and cab 5.7%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals, crude 5.5%
See More Products 66.7%
604.6 bn USD of products imported in 2022
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 6.9%
Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles...Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles for the transport of ten or more persons, motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, motor vehicles for the transport of goods and special purpose motor vehicles of heading 8701 to 8705, n.e.s. 4.9%
Electronic integrated circuits; parts thereofElectronic integrated circuits; parts thereof 4.4%
Petroleum gas and other gaseous hydrocarbonsPetroleum gas and other gaseous hydrocarbons 2.9%
Telephone sets, incl. telephones for cellular...Telephone sets, incl. telephones for cellular networks or for other wireless networks; other apparatus for the transmission or reception of voice, images or other data, incl. apparatus for communication in a wired or wireless network [such as a local or wide area network]; parts thereof (excl. than transmission or reception apparatus of heading 8443, 8525, 8527 or 8528) 2.7%
See More Products 78.3%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

To go further, check out our service Import Export Flows.

 

Main Services

17.0 bn USD of services exported in 2020
64.58%
18.13%
11.40%
2.63%
1.77%
1.00%
0.27%
0.10%
0.07%
0.05%
27.3 bn USD of services imported in 2020
40.67%
20.38%
13.66%
12.73%
6.55%
2.23%
2.16%
0.90%
0.54%
0.19%

Source: United Nations Statistics Division, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

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Latest Update: September 2023

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