India-Mexico Relations India-Mexico Relations

India-Mexico Relations

                          India-Mexico Relations               April 2022

           India-Mexico relations have consistently been friendly, warm and cordial, characterised by mutual understanding and growing bilateral trade and all-round cooperation. Antipodes as they are on the globe, they have striking similarities and commonalities - of geography, history, physiognomy, culture and civilisation, even of attitudes, mindsets and values of the people. Both countries are large emerging economies, with similar socio-economic development priorities and constraints, and have democratic, secular, and pluralistic systems, as well as convergent worldviews. Both are at somewhat comparable levels of economic and technological development, and are members of the important G-20, even if Mexico graduated from G-77 to joining OECD in 1994, and also joined NAFTA in 1995.

  1. 2.Mexico was the first Latin American country to recognize India after her independence, and both established diplomatic relations in 1950. Mexican wheat variety Sonora was instrumental in India’s Green Revolution. Mexicans in general have high interest and regard for Indian culture, political resilience, social values, and particular admiration for India’s economic, education, scientific and technological achievements of the recent years.

  2. 3.Indian heroes like Gandhi, Nehru, Tagore, and Mother Teresa are widely held in high esteem. The writings of Nobel-Laureate and Indophile Octavio Paz, Mexico’s envoy to India in the sixties, with his long years in India, significantly impacted Mexico’s view of India.

  3. 4.Political: Impelled by their commonalities, convergence of worldviews, and an issues-free relationship, India and Mexico have collaborated together closely on most major global issues, such as nuclear disarmament, climate change, trade, and global economicarchitecture. They elevated their ties to ‘Privileged Partnership’ during President Calderon’s state visit to India in 2007.

Till the mid-eighties, the two countries exchanged as many as eight visits at the level of Head of State and Government which epitomized the ties. A list of VVIP visits is given below:

From India to Mexico

From Mexico to India

Prime Minister Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru (1961)

President Adolfo Lopez Mateos (1962)

Prime Minister Smt. Indira Gandhi (1981)

President Luis Echeverria Álvarez (1975)

President Shri Giani Zail Singh (1984)

President Jose Lopez Portillo (1981)

Prime Minister Shri Rajiv Gandhi (1986)

President Miguel de la Madrid Hurtado (1985)

President Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil (2008)

President Felipe de Jesús Calderón Hinojosa (2007)

Prime Minister Shri Manmohan Singh (June 2012) – to attend G20 Summit at Los Cabos


Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi (June 2016)


  1. 5.There have also been several visits at Ministerial and other levels as listed below:

From the Indian side, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan MOS(I/C) for P&NG (May 2015); (Retd.) Gen. Shri V.K Singh, MOS(EA) (November 2016); Shri Kiren Rijiju, MoS for Home Affairs (May 2017); Shri Sanjay Dhotre, MOS, MHRD (December 2019) visited Mexico and Dr. S.Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister (September 2021).

  1. 6.From the Mexican side, Mr Jose Antonio Meade Kuribreña, Foreign Minister (October 2014, for JCM); Mr. Juan José Guerra Abud, Minister of Environment & Natural Resources (February 2015), Ms Claudia Ruiz Massieu, Foreign Minister (March 2016), Parliamentary delegation headed by Senator Teofilo Torres Corzo, President of the Asia-Pacific Commission on Foreign Relations (March 2017), Ms Maria Guadalupe Murguia Gutierrez, President of the Chamber of Deputies, (August 2017), Mexican Senator and President, IPU Ms. Gabriela Cuevas Barrón (December 2018); Ms. Rocio Nahle, Minister of Energy of Mexico in February 2019 & February 2020 and Mr. Marcelo Ebrard , Foreign Minister of Mexico (March 2022) visited India.
  1. 7.Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a visit to Mexico City on 8 June 2016 and held meetings with President Enrique Peña Nieto. They met again on the sidelines of G-20 meeting at Hamburg in July 2017. This visit was scheduled for holding the 8th JCM at Foreign Ministers level on 8 October 2019 in New Delhi, but the visit was cancelled.

  2. 8. Economic and Commercial: An outstanding feature of our current engagement is the sharp spurt in our bilateral trade and investment in recent years. India-Mexico bilateral trade had grown to US$10.15 billion in 2018 as per data from the Mexican Ministry of Economy, an unprecedented 20% increase against 2017, while also becoming the 9th biggest trade partner of Mexico. In 2019 the trade contracted by 8.17% reaching the figure of US$ 9.32 billion with Indian imports of US$ 4.14 billion and exports US$ 5.18 billion (data from Mexican Ministry of Economy). Due to the ravages caused by the global pandemic, trade figures witnessed a decline in the year 2020 with total trade at US $ 6.9 billion. However, the exports of pharmaceuticals products have remained steady in the year 2020 and increased by over 80%.
  1. 9.Exports to Mexico from India reached US $ 5.931 billion and imports from Mexico were at US $ 4.17 billion, taking the total trade to US$ 10.11 billion, making India the tenth largest trading partner of Mexico. The trade balance has remained in favour of India for the 8th consecutive year. In the trade basket from Indian side, the most important items of export are automobiles and auto parts and pharmaceuticals products. From Mexican side, most important item is crude oil. Crude oil also occupies 75% of export basket from Mexico. India is already Mexico’s third largest market globally.
  1. 10.Investments: Indian companies see Mexico as a major investment destination with access to NAFTA (now USMCA) and Latin America. Several Indian companies have already invested in Mexico in recent years. The three strongest performing areas for Indian investments in Mexico are information technology, pharmaceutical and automotive sectors. Almost all major Indian IT and ICT companies (TCS, Infosys,Tech Mahindra, NIIT, Aptech, Hexaware, Wipro, BirlaSoft, etc.) have operations in Mexico. Several Indian pharmaceutical firms (Lupin, Dr.Reddy’s Laboratories, Zydus, Claris, Life Sciences, Hetero Drugs, Sun Pharma, and Solara) have investments and operations in Mexico. In food processing sector, Parle has started manufacturing in the State of Mexico. Sakthi group is investing in the auto parts sector in Durango. Motherson Technical Precision Mexico has 15 plants in total in Mexico and recently announced an investment of 640 million pesos in January 2021. Overall, Indian investments in Mexico are far greater than the other way around. India’s investments in Mexico are around US$3 billion. Presently, over 180 Indian companies have presence in Mexico. Hero Motocorp, the largest two-wheeler maker of India also announced its plan to begin operations in Mexico after entering into a distribution agreement with Grupo Salinas in January 2021. Oyo Rooms entered the market of Mexico in 2019 and has continued to grow its operations.
  1. 11.From Mexican side, 17 major companies have presence in India. Leading Mexican companies like Nemak, Metalsa, Mexichem, Great Foods & Beverages, RuhrPumpen, Cinepolis and Kidzania have invested in India in recent times. Mexican IT company Softtek became the first Latin American company to have a presence in India as service provider. Bimbo Group has made investment acquiring a major stake in Harvest Gold and Ready Roti brand. Cinepolis has opened over 350 screens all over India penetrating tier 2 cities as well. In total, Mexico has only an investment of about US$610 million (both direct and indirect). The India-Mexico Business Chamber (IMBC) established in 2018 has proved instrumental in facilitating bilateral trade and investment.

  2. 12.Cultural: An agreement on cultural cooperation has been in existence since 1975 and cooperation activities are carried out through four-yearly ‘Programmes of Cultural Cooperation’ under the framework of this agreement. ICCR offers four scholarships to Mexicans every year. Leading Mexican university ‘Colegio de Mexico’ and the ‘National Autonomous University of Mexico’ have important centers of Indian studies. An Octavio Paz Chair of Indian Studies resourced by a professor deputed by ICCR was established at Colegio de Mexico in July 2010. Due to financial crunch in ICCR and some administrative difficulties in the Mexican University, the Chair could not be continued thereafter. India was the Guest of Honour country at the 46th Cervantino International Festival held in October 2018, the biggest cultural festival in the entire Hispanic world. India was also the first Asian nation to be the Guest of Honour country at Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL 2019) held in November-December of 2019. Within the framework of the 50th Cervantino International Festival, a major 3-day festival to celebrate India in Guanajuato was organised from 28-30 January 2022.

  3. 13.To mark the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, year-long celebrations were held in 2019 that included painting competition, talks in academic institutions on teachings of Gandhi, and tree plantation. A bust of Mahatma Gandhi, donated by ICCR to the Municipality of Guanajuato, a World Heritage City was installed on 26 April 2019. A statue of Swami Vivekananda is planned to be installed at the Autonomous University of the State of Hidalgo. 

  4. 14.The Gurudev Tagore Indian Cultural Centre has been functioning in Mexico since October 2010 to manifest widespread interest in Mexico in various facets of Indian art, culture, and way of life. Regular classes for Yoga, Indian Classical and Bollywood dances, Sitar, Tabla, Hindi, Sanskrit, and Indian Cooking Classes are held at the Centre. GTICC is also partnering with various local organizations to celebrate the 75 years of India’s independence under Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav.

  5. 15.Indian Community:  The Indian community (PIOs/NRIs) in Mexico is small, numbering about 6500 with about one fifth of them in Mexico City, and the rest spread in Guadalajara, Monterrey, Cuernavaca, Queretaro, etc. The bulk is formed by IT professionals working for TCS, Infosys and WIPRO. Others comprises executives of Indian and international companies, academicians, and some businessmen mostly in textile and garment business. In 2016, an ‘Indian Association of Mexico (IAM)’ has been registered locally which commands good membership and support of the community. There are a few Indian restaurants in Mexico City; Indian cuisine is regarded highly and is popular. Mexico City also has a Sikh Gurudwara, as well as an ISKCON temple.

Major Bilateral Agreements

  • Cultural Agreement (1975)
  • Agreement for Cooperation in Science & Technology (1975)
  • Cultural Exchange Programme (2005)
  • Educational Exchange Programme (2005)
  • Agreement on Visa Exemption on Diplomatic & Official Passports (2005)
  • Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in SMEs (2006)
    Extradition Treaty (2007)
  • Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty in Criminal Matters (2007)
  • Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (2007)
  • Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (2007)
  • Air Services Agreement (2008)
  • MOU on Cooperation in the Field of New and Renewable Energy (2008)

Agreement on Mutual Administrative Assistance in CustomsMatters (15 October 2012)

  • MOU on cooperation in the field of Promotion & Protection of Human Rights (Mar 2014)
  • MoU between ISRO and the Mexican Space Agency on Space Cooperation for Peaceful Purposes (October 2014)
  • Cooperation Agreement on Electoral Matters between the Federal Electoral Institute of the United Mexican States and the Election Commission of the Republic of India (27.10.2014).
  • MoU between the Electronics & Computer Software Export Promotion Council (ESC) of India and the Mexican Chamber of Electronics, Telecommunications, and Information Technologies (CANIETI) (October 2020).
  • MoU between the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and the Mexican Business Council of Foreign Trade, Investment and Technology (COMCE) for promoting the development of business relations between India and Mexico (October 2020).
  • Specific Cooperation Agreement between ISRO and Mexican Space Agency on Forest Fire Management using EO data and Capacity Building was signed in October 2020.