- Hans Weber
- February 26, 2024
Interview with H.E. Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Gutierrez, Ambassador of Mexico in the Czech Republic
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” Can you tell us something about your previous career in diplomatic service?
As career member of the Diplomatic Foreign Service of Mexico, my first post as Consul Third Secretary was at the Consulate General of Mexico in New Orleans, La., USA. Then, I was transferred to Mexico to deal with the cooperation border issues between Mexico and USA.
After some years, already as Minister, I served at the Embassy of Mexico in Hanoi, Vietnam, as Chargé d´Affairs (2002-2006). Late in 2006, I was designated Ambassador of Mexico to Jamaica and the Bahamas, as well as Permanent Representative to the International Seabed Authority (2006-2011). Then Ambassador to New Zealand, Samoa, Tonga and to Tuvalu (2011-2016). After that tour of duty, I did my time again in Mexico.
In August 2017, I presented my credentials to the President of the Czech Republic, Milos Zeman.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” How long are you already posted in Prague and how long will you still stay?
I am in my fourth year of tenure and I do not know how long I will stay. The Mexican Law states that the designation can be a minimum of two years and no more that six years. I hope this would be my case!
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” Which regions and cities have you already visited in Czech Republic?
I have been lucky to visit almost all the Czech regions and multiple cities, thanks to the implementation of many projects.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” What is your favorite place in Prague?
I’m not very original, Prague 1 and Prague 6. But I should say that there are many places I loved where you can find marvelous detailed corners, alleys, passageways, roads all around Prague.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” What are the main topics in the relationships between Mexico and the Czech Republic?
The relationship between the two countries is excellent in all fields! Nowadays, we are promoting the future ratification of the Modernized Mexico-European Union Agreement, which I am sure will allow us to significantly improve our trade and investment.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” What can you tell us about the Mexican community in Prague and how integrated are the members into the Czech society?
The Mexican community is relatively small. At the Embassy, we have the registration of about 250 Mexicans. They are very well integrated. You can visit some of their successful business like some restaurants, flower stores, painters. Also, we have many students, and people working in different areas.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” How is the Mexican economy developing?
As in the whole world, Mexico is suffering the impact of Covid-19, both in human lives (more than 250,000 deaths) and in all fields. All economic sectors had to stop, with its consequent effect in the labor market, mainly the informal one.
Thus, even though the economy slowed down, our international trade remained strong. While the contraction of the GDP in 2020 was around 8.5% compared to 2019, now the IMF projects a growth of 4.3 in 2021.
One of the vey important sectors, is the automotive one. For example, between January and December 2020, the production of light vehicles contracted around 20% annually. But between January and May 2021, these vehicles export grew more than 37% compared to the same period of 2020.
Tourism is another sector that was severely affected, even though Mexico never closed totally the country. Nowadays, people are welcomed in our touristic destinations, respecting the official hygiene recommendations.
We have good expectations.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” How do you see the evolution of the USMCA (new version of the NAFTA) ?
As you know, the T-MEC for Mexico -USMCA for the USA-, came into force just last 1st of July of 2020. As substitute of NAFTA.
With NAFTA, from 1994 and 2015, trade between the three countries quadrupled (from $297 billion to $1.14 trillion dollars). For Mexico, exports in the framework of NAFTA grew exponentially. In 2015 this sector represented 35 percent of the GDP, with the US being the largest destination for Mexican exports.
But NAFTA became insufficient. For example, it did not have an electronic trade chapter, because in 1994 there was no necessary. On August 16, 2017, negotiations between the 3 countries began towards its modernization.
Although impacted by the COVID, nowadays our trade balance is positive: $173,814 billion dollars. For the first four months of 2021 Mexico accumulated $199,919 dollars on foreign trade.
For Mexico, T-MEC represents
For me here in Czech Republic I am more interested in the conclusion of the process of the modernized Global Agreement Mexico-EU. I am sure it will detonate tremendous opportunities for our two countries.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” Can you tell us something about the Mexican-American relations before the Trump administration, while and after.
The relations with the Trump administration were difficult but, at the end, we were able to ratified the TMEC, that rules more than 80% of our trade (84.01% exports, 46.09% imports and 65.86% total trade).
On the other hand, relations were respectful, in general terms. We hope the relations can manage now all the great opportunities we have as neighbors interested in doing the best of both communities.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” How is Mexico handling the migration waves going to the USA.
Mexico is duly applying the Mexican migration laws with the spirit of the commitments established by the Global Compact for Migration adopted by United Nations , towards a safe, orderly and regular migration.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Rosaura Leonora Rueda Guiterreez” How would you compare Czechs and Mexicans.
We both are peace lover countries and societies, that work untiringly in the international arena, multilaterally and bilaterally for the wellbeing of our societies and the world. We both have these feelings nurtured by our rich culture, historical experiences and the greatness of our citizens.
Hans Weber Dear Mrs. Ambassador, thank you very much for your time and answers.