Successful Mexico-Spain Interparliamentary Meeting


Since July 2017, no Interparliamentary Meeting had been held between Mexico and Spain, hurricane-force political winds, a pandemic and a war invasion until the scenario has been so adverse that necessity has become a virtue.

The recently concluded 16th Spain-Mexico Interparliamentary Meeting has been very successful, and I dare say that the delegation of Mexican legislators (including senators and deputies) who arrived in Madrid on Saturday 26 November will return to the Aztec country full of new energy, with a different vision and a different way of doing things.

Perhaps this is the greatest failure of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador: his obtuse, closed and localist vision prevents him from looking beyond his national balcony, because abroad there are other ways of doing things in favour of the prosperity of societies. 

The delegation headed by Senator Ricardo Monreal and Congressman Santiago Creel found an atmosphere of open arms for all the accompanying legislators; the PRI was conspicuous by its absence.

What was achieved at the meeting with their Spanish counterparts? Basically, a memorandum of understanding was reached on cooperation, education, legal security and climate change.

Although during the opening of the work in the Cortes, Senator Monreal alluded in his speech to the history of "Spain and Mexico, full of encounters and disagreements", Deputy Creel recalled the vital energy between the two nations, twinned for hundreds of years and full of communicating vessels, and today, two partners who need each other. 

"Because Mexico is the leading investor in Spain in the entire Latin American region; and in the case of Spain, it is the second most important investor for Mexico," he recalled.

Two partners and friends who have historically lent each other a helping hand in international forums, and by 2023, the Aztec country needs Spain's backing before the European Union (EU) to push through the Global Agreement between Mexico and the EU, which will allow the existing treaty to be replaced, in order to modernise it. 

The legislator Creel himself highlighted the benefits of the much-desired new agreement because "it will allow the entire flow of trade to be liberalised with no more tariffs", something that will help to reduce the prices of imported goods and make exports flow more dynamically.  And Spain, from the second half of 2023, will preside over the EU Council.

The timescale for approval of the new agreement is vague, but Senator Monreal said here in Madrid that it could be "ready to be approved between March and April" next year.

On the subject 

These days in Spain, Mexican legislators have been wonderfully well treated, not only at official receptions, but also at the Complutense University and other forums.

In the document entitled Conclusions of the Spain-Mexico Interparliamentary Meeting, under the heading of cooperation on security and strengthening the rule of law, it is stated that both sides recognise that security issues are key to citizen coexistence and that terrorism and organised crime are a threat to democracy and world peace

Most of the news flowing into Spain and throughout Europe is of a Mexico in the hands of crime, with the rule of law weakened and co-opted mainly by drug traffickers

This delegation of Mexican legislators has seen a Madrid where it is still possible to walk the streets with peace of mind and where the security forces are highly valued by the citizens themselves.

Hopefully they will take away good ideas to extrapolate to Mexico, especially to improve its roads and public transport, especially the metro in the country's capital. After this, I dare say that there will be more interparliamentary meetings and that they will be very fruitful, because Spain is very interested in seeing Mexico do well.

I must not fail to mention the beautiful little boxes from Olinalá, Guerrero, made by artisan hands, which Creel gave to Meritxell Batet, President of Congress, and Ander Gil, President of the Senate. Nor the conversation between Monreal and Creel (the microphone was open, but they didn't notice) at the end of the meeting: Monreal told Creel that "we'll continue with what you and I have talked about now that we're back in Mexico; you and I will continue with what we've planned".