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Local officials scramble as Progreso tax-incentive program evaporates

Several high-tech companies had expressed an interest in doing business in Yucatan

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Progreso’s Special Economic Zone has been canceled by the federal government. Photo: Courtesy

Yucatan’s business community lamented the cancellation of Progreso’s Special Economic Zone (ZEE), which was officially announced Thursday by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

The announcement nixes tax incentives meant to lure businesses to Yucatan, where a high-tech corridor was intended to infuse the region’s economy with high-tech jobs.

Entrepreneurs and politicians had even hoped to expand the program to Valladolid.

Progreso’s leaders are regrouping to find ways to continue talks with private companies considering investing along Yucatan’s Gulf coast.

The president of the Confederation of National Chambers of Commerce (Concanaco), Jose Manuel Lopez Campos, said the president’s unilateral decision catches local leaders short.

“What worries is that they are investment projects that were advertised around the world and there were already international companies that had expressed their interest to participate, and trust is one of the requirements to attract investment to the country,” Lopez Campos told Sipse.

Some form of a ZEE is worth salvaging without federal support, he said, because both national and foreign corporations had expressed interest in investing under the Yucatan program.

“If it is no longer a federal project, it could then be given another approach, reorienting the vocation, the dimension and the call to companies,” he said.

It is up to local businesses communities and governments to attract investors, he added.

The special economic zone was expected to generate more than 33,000 programming, engineering and information technology jobs in Yucatan.

Source: Sipse

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