top of page
  • Writer's

IMMEX & Maquila Programs

Updated: Apr 14, 2022

Mexico's IMMEX program is defined as an instrument to temporarily import goods and services that will be manufactured, transformed or repaired, and then re-exported without payment of taxes, compensatory quotas, and other specific benefits.

In the past, there used to be two separate programs in Mexico; Pitex for 'temporary' imports and exports, and the Maquila program for maquila-specific operations.

The new IMMEX program consolidates the benefits of these legacy programs and facilitates interaction with government authorities to operate under the program. (

There are four high-level trading activities the companies should consider in order to assess the appropriate usage of the maquila program: U.S. and/or Foreign Exports

Maquiladoras are factories in Mexico that are owned and run by a foreign company. They manufacture the company's products in Mexico and then export them to other countries. (

The maquiladora program originally began in 1965 by the Mexican government as a means of alleviating unemployment problems along the borders, while providing foreign companies various tax and duty-free benefits, special customs terms and easy access to skilled, affordable labor particularly for the manufacturing industry. By 1985, maquiladoras became the largest source of foreign exchange in Mexico. (


Example: ACME LOGISTICS is a legal entity in Mexico that distributes goods within Mexico that are subsequently exported or used in products that are exported.

Example: Tetakawi has a legal entity in Mexico that that is registered as a “shelter” provider to foreign manufacturers that want to make products in Mexico without having to have their own legal entity and corresponding IMMEX registration.

Shelter IMMEX: A registered Mexican company can serve as a legal entity that assumes all legal risk and liability for manufacturers operating beneath its IMMEX registration.

Example: ACME INDUSTRIES is a legal entity in Mexico that does not have manufacturing infrastructure of its own and therefore contracts its manufacturing with third parties. (


Avoid the payment of VAT which is typically 15% of the import value or 10% for cities that border the United States

Reduce Customs fee (DTA) from 8% to 1.76% of the value for machinery and a flat fixed fee of 179.00 pesos for goods

Mexican labor costs are 40-50% less than the United States (

There are many reasons that Mexico has become a favorite target for foreign investment, but the IMMEX program might very well lead that list. IMMEX which roughly stands for the Maquiladora, Manufacturing, and Export Services Industry was created by the Mexican government to strengthen national exports.

By all accounts, it's met that goal. By incentivizing manufacturers to export goods, the IMMEX program led to a 99 percent increase in export trade in just over a decade, from $210 billion in 2005 to $419 billion in 2017. (

142 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page