IBM believes in a vision of economic development and vitality where technology helps drive more active and engaged communities through citizen-based services, including health care, infrastructure, public safety, supply chain and education, all enabling "smarter" regions and societies.
The dominant cities, regions and countries around the world today are planning for long-term growth to build their economic competitive advantage. They are doing this by collaborating across levels of government, industry and academia - working across political, social and technological divides to achieve bigger, better and more sustainable outcomes in jobs, business environments and citizen quality of life.
This is why we were honored to be part of the U.S. business delegation to Mexico - deepening our relationships with government and business leaders, some of which we’ve held for many years, since IBM first opened for business in Mexico in 1927. We share Secretary Pritzker’s belief that Mexico is an important growth market on its own, a key trade partner to the USA and perhaps the world. This is why we are investing in opening up a cloud computing data center in Mexico City later this year. We believe that Mexico can benefit from the adoption of new technology to enable their cities and States for the future.
As the general managers of IBM’s public sector and Federal business units, respectively, we are always looking for opportunities to share best practices in business and government and learn from the experience of others. Mexico is our neighbor and partner, and it was rewarding to spend several days in such insightful discussions with the leaders in business, academia and government.
Our trip began with a meeting with Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal, Secretary of Economy. Later that morning we joined Under Secretary for Communications Jose Ignacio Peralta, Under Secretary for Infrastructure Juan Murietta, and Under Secretary for Transportation Carlos Almada. Under Secretary Peralta gave us an overview of Mexico’s recently-passed telecommunications reforms. We also had a productive meeting with Mercedes Juan López, where we discussed new forms of telehealth, and what we could gain by pairing doctors in Mexico with doctors in the US to share their ideas and suggested treatment options.
On Wednesday, our meetings included the Mexican Ministry of Energy, sharing ideas on a variety of important topics including smart grid and efficient energy. With the Mexican National Water Commission, we discussed how Mexico can leverage smarter water management solutions for improved citizen service and protection of a critical natural resource. Likewise, with the Mexican Institute of Transportation we discussed the power of data and how to generate predictive patterns to improve cross-border trade.
We concluded our trip with a visit to Monterrey, the capital city of Nuevo Leon. Monterrey is the flagship city in Mexico for innovation, collaboration and growth as measured by GDP. Meetings included the Governor and his leadership team, including Jorge Domene, the Spokesman for Security and Social Affairs, with whom we had a lively discussion on the region of Nuevo Leon and the services afforded to its citizens. We also participated in spirited roundtables on healthcare and technology, where we were able to share best practices. This was followed by a meeting with the leadership of Tecnologico de Monterrey. This institution is a wonderful example of the far reaching collaboration and training of future leaders. Not only are they training future leaders of Mexico, they have a study abroad program that includes 400 higher education institutions around the world.
All in all, an inspirational trip in a country with a bright future. In business, successful companies are those that can maintain long-term, sustained competitive advantage. It is encouraging to see the government of Mexico think the same way.
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