Mexico’s Senate on Tuesday voted to ratify a Asia-Pacific trade agreement

TPP mexico

Mexico’s Senate on Tuesday voted to ratify a Asia-Pacific trade agreement (TPP), making it the first of 11 signatory countries to back the arduously negotiated framework that was rejected by the United States.

Senators voted 73-24 to approve the pact, which was signed in March without the United States after U.S. President Donald Trump pulled out of talks within days of taking office last year.

Mexico, which has been a leading proponent of free trade in Latin America, is currently in talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Canada and the United States. Trump has repeatedly threatened to scrap NAFTA if it is not reworked to benefit U.S. workers.

Despite striking a string of free-trade deals since the original NAFTA deal in 1993, Mexico still sends 80 percent of its exports to its northern neighbor.

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said the new Asia-Pacific pact would open up more markets to Mexican goods.

“With this new generation agreement, Mexico diversifies its economic relations with the world and demonstrates its commitment to openness and free trade,” Pena Nieto said on his Twitter account.

The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) will reduce tariffs in countries that together amount to more than 13 percent of the global economy – a total of $10 trillion in gross domestic product.

The original 12-member agreement, known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), would have represented 40 percent of the world economy if the United States had not dropped out.

The 11 remaining nations finalized a revised trade pact and stripped out some U.S. demands, including rules to ramp up intellectual property protection of pharmaceuticals.

Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, Japan, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam signed the deal and a total of six counties will need to ratify the agreement for it to take effect.

Japan and the United States are currently at loggerheads on how to frame new trade talks between the two longtime allies. Trump has rebuffed Tokyo’s calls to rejoin the Trans-Pacific pact, instead preferring a two-way trade deal.

Current discussions regarding NAFTA have taken a more positive tone this week. Trump said on Tuesday a new deal could be agreed on quickly.

Ministers from the United States, Canada and Mexico are meeting in Washington to try to narrow differences on content rules for autos in the hope of making a deal in the coming days.

Reporting by Sharay Angulo and Diego Ore. Writing by Michael O’Boyle; Editing by Michael Perry

Mexico, European Union reach new trade deal, eliminating duties on most goods

European cheeses: tariffs coming off.European cheeses: tariffs coming off.

Mexico, European Union reach new trade deal, eliminating duties on most goods

Big winners in Europe are exporters of poultry, cheese, chocolate, pasta and pork

Mexico and the European Union (EU) have reached an updated trade agreement, reaffirming their commitment to free trade in contrast to the United States’ move towards greater protectionism.

Saturday’s announcement came as talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) continue and six weeks after Mexico and 10 other Pacific Rim countries formally entered into a revised Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact.

In a joint statement by the secretariats of Foreign Affairs and Economy, the Mexican government said the agreement in principle includes political, economic and cooperation aspects that “will allow political dialogue to be strengthened and increase trade and investment flows.”

With lingering uncertainty still surrounding NAFTA — including a tweet by United States President Donald Trump today suggesting an agreement might be conditional on immigration policy — news of the deal was welcomed as it could help Mexico reduce its dependency on its northern neighbor.

A European Commission (EC) press release said that “practically all trade in goods between the EU and Mexico will now be duty-free,” including those in the agricultural sector.

European exporters of poultry, cheese, chocolate, pasta and pork are the biggest winners, the EC statement said, because they will now have preferential or tariff-free access to the Mexican market.

Tariffs on chocolate and pasta, currently as much as 30% and 20% respectively, will be removed completely and trade barriers will also be lifted on cheeses such as Gorgonzola and Roquefort.

In turn, Mexican exporters will benefit from the removal of tariffs on products such as orange juice, tuna, honey and agave syrup.

The agreement also ensures “the protection from imitation for 340 distinctive European foods and drink products in Mexico.”

The right to use European names for Mexican-made cheeses had previously been a sticking point in the negotiations.

Among them were manchego, parmesan and gruyere, but Mexican producers will be able to continue using those names.

The EC also said the updated arrangement “will be the first EU trade agreement to tackle corruption in the private and public sectors” and it also includes sections on sustainable development and climate change.

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström highlighted the speed with which the deal was reached.

“In less than two years, the EU and Mexico have delivered a deal fit for the economic and political challenges of the 21st century,” she said.

“We now open a new chapter in our long and fruitful relationship, boosting trade and creating jobs. Today’s agreement also sends a strong message to other partners that it is possible to modernize existing trade relations when both partners share a clear belief in the merits of openness, and of free and fair trade.”

The updated agreement replaces the pact that came into force in 2000 and will take effect once it has been approved by lawmakers both in Mexico and the EU.

Economy Secretary Ildefonso Guajardo, Malmström and EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan also released a joint statement saying the agreement “will contribute to making our trade relationship fit to face the opportunities and challenges of the 21st century.”

“. . . The European Union and Mexico stand together for open, fair and rules-based trade. Our negotiators will now continue their work to resolve the remaining technical issues and finalize the full legal text so that our citizens and enterprises can start reaping its benefits as soon as possible.”

Annual trade between the two is €62 billion (US $75 billion) and growing at about 8% per year, according to European Union figures. The latter is running a trade surplus of €14 billion (US $17 billion).

The EU is Mexico’s third biggest trade partner in goods, while Mexico is the EU’s 13th biggest.

Mexico’s biggest trade partner is the U.S. The two do US $525 billion in trade annually, in goods and services.

Source: El País (sp), 24 Horas (sp)

UPDATED: This story has been updated to include information regarding Mexican-made cheeses and Mexico-EU trade flows.

Busing The Bay: Destination, Pay It Forward

Busing The Bay: Destination, Pay It Forward

Recently I observed a mother and daughter board a bus, the daughter sat in one row, the mother two rows behind, beside me. The daughter turned to talk to her mom and her thermos rolled off her lap, onto the floor and shattered. The daughter looked horrified, the mom calmly told her to clean it up. I had a plastic bag with me, so I offered it to the mother. She gratefully took it and the daughter cleaned her mess up best she could. I could only imagine how the girl felt about her chances of getting a new thermos any time soon. The girl had tears trickling down her face but never said a word, nor did the mother.

Suddenly, it was my stop and the mother and child exited the bus as well. We crossed the highway to the median and had to wait for traffic.

As we waited I saw tear stains on the girls face and I realized that at no time had the mom displayed any anger at her daughter. What a great mom, I thought. I impulsively offered the mother 100 pesos for her daughter for a new thermos. The mother spoke little English, but with my limited Spanish I told her I had six grandchildren in Canada but none in Mexico and I would like to buy them a new thermos. With a big smile on her face, the girl accepted the money; we crossed the highway and bid each other adios.

Returning home, I related my experience to my wife and we both jokingly wondered if the girl would get her new thermos.

The next day, while waiting for a bus into PV, a bus pulled up and the same girl and her mother got off. I pointed them out to my wife as I noticed she had a new thermos.

She dropped her thermos!

It did not break.

As she picked it up she saw me and gave me a big smile. Her mom looked our way and this time I was rewarded with a smile and a wave.

I felt like a million pesos!

A spontaneous act on my part and I was rewarded with smiles.

Living in Mexico certainly makes you appreciate what we have and the opportunity to “Pay it Forward’ exists everywhere.

Buy shrimp on a stick on the beach, on the bus buy candy, or chips, tip musicians, waiters, taxi drivers, and hotel staff generously.

Many of these people exist on your tips and a little generosity on your part can go a long way in helping people in their daily lives.

Remember, 100 pesos are not the same as 100 dollars.

And smiles of gratitude are priceless.

For my wife’s sixty something birthday, I planned a surprise party where I had her favorite band (Soul Trip) play Saturday afternoon at Ana Bananas in La Cruz. (We went by bus). I notified friends that “their presence was requested, and presents were not”, but tips for the band would be appreciated.

Our friend “Ceedub” took this to a new level. He offered the band a 500 pesos tip if they would learn Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down” and play it as his present to Velma. The song is a regular in their repertoire now and every time we hear it we always remember “Ceedub’s” pay it forward moment and we smile with gratitude

Puerto Vallarta introduces new urban transport system

Puerto Vallarta introduces new urban transport system

April 23, 2018

Puerto Vallarta has started introducing a completely new and modern public bus system aimed to provide passengers a comprehensive and high-quality service. The new buses are being produced by DINA, a Mexican automotive producer of heavy duty and specialty vehicles, and will have air conditioning, security cameras, information screens and a payment system for prepaid cards.

Eight buses went into operation earlier this month as an introduction to the local population with an additional 90 buses being added gradually until December of this year when 332 new units will make up Puerto Vallarta’s only public bus system in operation.

“Puerto Vallarta is one of those destinations where visitors feel comfortable using our public transportation system to explore the city,” said Javier Aranda Pedrero, Director of the Puerto Vallarta Tourism Board. “We are eager to provide a world-class bus system worthy of Puerto Vallarta not only to our visitors but to our local community, many of which work to make Puerto Vallarta an international tourist destination.”

During the implementation phase, Puerto Vallarta ’s public transportation system will be hosting an introduction period to local authorities, hoteliers, and members of the local population to introduce the service. Presentations will also be done at schools and brochures will be distributed to bus riders using the current system to ensure maximum exposure of the new routes and payment system.

The new public buses will run on gas, lowering pollution in the city. Drivers will also be trained to meet all the requirements of Jalisco’s Department of Transportation and to ensure that drivers no longer speed to pick up passengers. In addition, a new night service with a transportation starting at midnight will be added to provide service industry workers with safe transportation during the hours that many locals travel to work at hotels, restaurants, tours, etc. The Buho (owl in Spanish) will operate the main routes of Puerto Vallarta.

Whale sharks, Mayan ruins are among top 50 bucket list experiences

Swimming with whale sharks, a bucket list top 50.Swimming with whale sharks, a bucket list top 50.

Whale sharks, Mayan ruins are among top 50 bucket list experiences

World’s Ultimate Bucket List names Quintana Roo attractions

Two Mexican destinations are among the top-50 experiences on the “best bucket list ever assembled,” according to the travel agency Flight Network.

Swimming with whale sharks and visiting Mayan ruins, both in Quintana Roo, were deemed bucket list-quality experiences on the World’s Ultimate Bucket List for 2018.

The whale sharks, an attraction offered at both Isla Holbox and Isla Mujeres, was ranked 22nd by judges for the list, who said they were the only locations in the Americas where scuba diving enthusiasts can share the water with the largest fish in the sea.

While intimidating in size, “these creatures are actually gentle giants who are curious and welcoming to visitors,” explained the Flight Network in a blog post.

“Travelers can dive or snorkel into a world teeming with wondrous animals and vibrant corals.”

It said Isla Holbox has become a hotspot for the experience, especially during the June-September peak season.

At 39th on the list are the state’s Mayan ruins (along with those of Guatemala and Belize), described by one of the judges as “the hallmark of the Mayans’ accomplishments in architecture, astronomy and community organization.”

The Flight Network blog said the remaining Mayan architecture “retains remnants of their intellectual curiosity, where they created a calendar based on astrological influences to predict hundreds of years into the future.”

It cites the Mayan cities of Tulum and Chichén Itzá and the lesser-known Coba.

Flight Network describes its bucket list as “a diverse collection of hidden gem locations and exhilarating activities from every stunning corner of our planet.”

The agency consulted more than 800 travel journalists, agencies, bloggers and editors to create the list, which it describes “the most reliable and precise bucket list for the modern era, meant to captivate and inspire travelers all over the world.”

The judges ranked African wildlife safaris as No. 1 on the list. An expedition to Antarctica and seeing the northern lights were second and third.

Mexico News Daily

Single Story For Sale in Amapas, Puerto Vallarta

•  199 sqft , 2 bath , 2 bdrm single story FOR SALE  USD495,000 .
MLS® 13187

Paramount Bay es un desarrollo contemporáneo muy codiciado con jardines bien cuidados, gimnasio y una piscina de 200 pies de largo con un bar en la piscina. Desde su excepcional ubicación, se puede caminar a la playa en 5 minutos y algunos de los mejores restaurantes en el casco antiguo dentro de 8. Esta unidad se encuentra en el edificio intermedio e incluye 2 hermosas habitaciones con baño, totalmente amuebladas y con vistas despejadas de Los Muertos Pier y Puerto Vallarta!

Paramount Bay is a highly coveted contemporary development with beautifully maintained gardens, fitness center and a 200 foot long pool with a swim up bar. From its exceptional location one can safely walk to the beach in 5 minutes and some of the best restaurants in Old Town within 8. This unit is in the middle building and includes 2 beautiful en-suite bedrooms, fully furnished and has unobstructed views of Los Muertos Pier and Puerto Vallarta!

Property information

Air Canada predicts 36% more capacity

Air Canada predicts 36% more capacity

Airline predicts increased capacity for Mexico flights.

Airline predicts increased capacity for Mexico flights.

Airline plans additional services and increased frequency between Canada, Mexico

 

Canadian carrier Air Canada is predicting a 36% increase in its passenger carrying capacity between Mexico and Canada this year, the company’s general manager for Mexico said this week.

Luis Noriega told a press conference that the outlook for 2018 is considerably better than the growth rates the airline achieved in both 2016 and 2017, when the number of flights between the two countries increased by 19% and 13% respectively.

To achieve the 36% projected increase, the company will need to operate a total of 6,402 flights between Mexico and Canada in 2018, an average of about 17.5 flights per day.

The opening of a seasonal route between Mexico City and Montreal — operating between March 28 and November 2 — for the fourth consecutive year will help boost the overall number of flights, as will additional services to destinations including Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos, Cancún and Ixtapa.

Air Canada is expected to increase its frequency to the popular resort cities in October when a renovated fleet of Boeing 747s comes online. An additional service between Mexico City and Vancouver is also scheduled to begin on May 1.

Strong projected growth in the domestic market is expected after a record number of over 358,000 Mexicans traveled to Canada last year, Noriega said.

He explained that the removal of the visa requirement for Mexican travelers as well as increased interest from small and medium-sized Mexican companies in doing business in Canada were factors that contributed to the increase.

For Canadian citizens, Mexico continues to be the second most popular international tourism destination, Noriega said, adding that the appreciation of the Canadian dollar against the Mexican peso has further boosted visitor numbers.

Two million Canadians visited Mexico last year, he explained.

Another Canadian carrier, WestJet, began operating non-stop flights to Mexico City from the Canadian cities of Calgary and Vancouver last month, and low-cost carrier Sunwing Airlines also introduced new seasonal services in January from Montreal and Toronto to Acapulco.

Source: Notimex (sp)

Single Story For Sale in Amapas, puerto vallarta

•  199 sqft , 2 bath , 2 bdrm single story FOR SALE  USD495,000 .
MLS® 13187

Paramount Bay es un desarrollo contemporáneo muy codiciado con jardines bien cuidados, gimnasio y una piscina de 200 pies de largo con un bar en la piscina. Desde su excepcional ubicación, se puede caminar a la playa en 5 minutos y algunos de los mejores restaurantes en el casco antiguo dentro de 8. Esta unidad se encuentra en el edificio intermedio e incluye 2 hermosas habitaciones con baño, totalmente amuebladas y con vistas despejadas de Los Muertos Pier y Puerto Vallarta!

Paramount Bay is a highly coveted contemporary development with beautifully maintained gardens, fitness center and a 200 foot long pool with a swim up bar. From its exceptional location one can safely walk to the beach in 5 minutes and some of the best restaurants in Old Town within 8. This unit is in the middle building and includes 2 beautiful en-suite bedrooms, fully furnished and has unobstructed views of Los Muertos Pier and Puerto Vallarta!

Property information

Puerto Vallarta Restaurant Week 2018 begins in May

Puerto Vallarta Restaurant Week 2018 begins in May

April 11, 2018
Puerto Vallarta Restaurant Week

Puerto Vallarta Restaurant Week will be extended this year for an extra 10 days, from May 15 to June 10 next .

This gastronomic event also breaks a record this year with 59 restaurants participating, up from 45 restaurants in the 2012 festival. The participating restaurants will offer menus divided into three courses and three price points: 269, 399 and 466 pesos per person, up to 50 percent less than the original menu prices.

Since its first edition in 2005, the Puerto Vallarta Restaurant Week festival has been supported by the Riviera Nayarit Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Puerto Vallarta Tourism Trust.

From New York to London, dining events in which participating restaurants offer a special, fixed price menu during a week or two, have become strong magnets for people wishing to visit such cities. Known in most places as Restaurant Week, these type of events encourage visitors and locals to experience restaurants’ exquisite offerings at reduced prices.

The 59 participating restaurants in this year’s Puerto Vallarta Restaurant Week are:

Agrodolce, Ambrosia Grill, Archie’s Wok, Azafrán, Barcelona Tapas, Barrio Bistro by Memo Wulff, Boccon Di Vino, Café des Artistes Puerto Vallarta, Coco Tropical, Daiquiri Dick’s, Da Simone, De Cántaro, Di Vino Dante, Eishan Oriental Cuisine, El Arrayan, Florios, Fusion Gourmet, Gaby’s Restaurant Bar, Gaviotas, Hacienda San Angel, India Gate, Kaiser Maximilian, Katana Sushi & Bar, La Cappella, La Cigale French Bistro, La Leche, La Pancha, La Trattoria, Layla’s Restaurante, Mamá Sirena,

Mark’s Bar & Grill, Matiz, Mérida Grill, Mikado, Nicksan, No Way José!, Oso’s Fish Market Restaurant, Pezlimon, Pizzeria La Dolce, Porto Bello, Restaurante Icú, River Café, Roberto’s Mexican Seafood, Sapori Di Sicilia, Seasons P.V., Serrano’s Meat House, Sí Señor Beach, Sushi Pop, Taste Restaurant @ Casa Cúpula, Teresa Bar & Bistro, The Blue Shrimp, The Iguana, The Swedes, Tintoque, Trio Mediterranean, Tuna Blanca, Vallarta Factory, Vitea Oceanfront Bistro y Warique Restaurante.

Los restaurantes que se unen por vez primera el evento son: Agrodolce, Ambrosia Grill, Azafrán, Da Simone, De Cántaro, Eishan Oriental Cuisine, La Cappella, La Pancha, La Trattoria, Katana Sushi & Bar, Mamá Sirena, Matiz, Restaurante Icú, Sapori Di Sicilia, Sushi Pop, Teresa Bar & Bistro, Vallarta Factory and Warique Restaurante.

Restaurant Week 2017

Official website