February 5, 2021
1. President proposes electrical reform
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, sent a preferential bill to Congress that seeks to modify the Law of the Electricity Industry. This initiative aims to give the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) the power to review the legality and profitability of electricity generation and sale contracts that are signed with independent producers under the Public Electricity Service Act.
Moreover, the Supreme Court of Justice annulled several of the important points regarding energy policy promoted by Energy Secretary Rocío Nahle. The Supreme Court emphasized that the Policy of Reliability, Safety, Continuity and Quality in the National Electrical System, published on May 15th, 2020, grants an exclusive and unfair advantage to the CFE with respect to the proposal of strategic projects.
2. Sputnik V vaccine approved while vaccination for older adults is delayed
The Federal Commission for the Protection of Health Risks (Cofepris) approved emergency use of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine in Mexico, becoming the third vaccine approved for use in the country. With this permission, there is a possibility that it can be imported and used in the country. Biological and Reactant Laboratories of Mexico (Birmex) will be responsible for representing the Russian government in Mexico. The federal government has announced its plan to purchase 7 to 12 million doses.
In February, the second stage of the National Vaccination Plan began, where older adults are scheduled to be vaccinated against COVID-19. In this regard, the federal government enabled the website: mivacuna.salud.gob.mx, so that people over the age of 60 register and can be vaccinated. However, the portal has remained inactive since it was first revealed on February 2nd.
3. Electoral council approves ballot; Morena partisans disagree over candidate accused of sexual abuse
The General Council of the National Electoral Institute (INE) approved the format of the ballots to be used in the June 6th federal elections. The ballot will have space for 10 political parties that will be ordered by date of creation and two spaces for independent candidates. The approved format considered graphic aspects, geometric rules, as well as visual and psychological perception.
On the other side, The Morena party chose Félix Salgado Macedonio as a pre-candidate to the governorship of Guerrero. Women from the Morena party have voiced their opposition to the nomination, as Salgado has received three allegations of rape, and at least three other sexual abuse and harassment accusations. Morena President Mario Delgado has stated that if there is no sentence to convict him, Félix Salgado will continue as the candidate.
4. Open Parliament concludes on reform of the Bank of Mexico Law
On February 1st and 2nd, Open Parliament was held in the Chamber of Deputies to discuss the initiative to reform the Law of the Bank of Mexico (Banxico) regarding the acquisition of foreign currencies in cash. Relevant authorities, bankers, members of civil society and legislators discussed Banxico’s proposal to acquire surplus U.S. dollars in cash that banks in the country have, and move them to international reserves.
The initiative was approved by the Senate in December 2020 and will be debated in the Chamber of Deputies. Banxico chief Alejandro Díaz commented that this initiative would violate the autonomy of the Central Bank by imposing active operations on it. Carlos Serrano, chief economist at BBVA Mexico, stressed that the proposed changes could represent a serious risk to Mexico’s financial stability.
5. Outsourcing, regulation of social media and electricity reform priority in Congress
On February 1st, the second regular session of the 64th Legislature began, and legislators are expected to resume discussions on a variety of topics, including outsourcing, social media regulation, the creation of the Law of the Attorney General’s Office of the Republic, the decriminalization of recreational marijuana use and the preferential initiative to reform the Law on the Electricity Industry.
Regarding the outsourcing initiative, in the Committee on Labor and Social Security of the Chamber of Deputies, legislators declare that they are ready to expedite the analysis of the outsourcing initiative. Anita Sánchez, secretary of the Commission, argued that, “no matter what – the initiative will be approved.” Coordination work between the Secretariat of Labor and Social Security will continue as a result.
Alto Nivel: Diputados y senadores prevén legislar sobre el outsourcing, redes sociales, despenalización de la marihuana y cambiar la Ley de la Industria Eléctrica.
El Economista: Iniciativa sobre outsourcing ya tiene lugar en la agenda de San Lázaro