Milenio, a Mexican news outlet, is reporting this week that Tesla has concluded an agreement with the state of Nueve Léon to build a new factory west of the city of Santa Catarina. CleanTechinca readers may recall that Nueve Léon is home to so many suppliers for the Tesla Gigafactory in Austin that there is now a dedicated lane at the border crossing into the United States for all the trucks head north. Mileno says the agreement is confidential, but its sources say the agreement will be made public after the first of the year.
“Tesla will come to Santa Catarina. The investment will be finalized in the coming weeks, after the end of the year it will be announced. The commitment is that it must be completed immediately after the start of 2023. We know that it will generate employment and it will be located in the only area available, which is the west of that municipality. It is not possible to inform more, because there is a confidentiality contract,” according to Milenio‘s sources. Elon Musk made a visit to San Pedro Garza García and Monterrey in October.
The sources claim the land where the plant will be built has already been acquired, although a search of public land records failed to reveal any such completed transactions in the area west of Santa Catarina. “I understand that they already bought the land. Maybe they don’t want what happened with KIA to happen to them, but it is real that Musk made them confidential since the land around where it was bought is going to go up (in price),” said one of the sources. “I don’t think it is still (the property) in the name of the company.” The records search did reveal sales to companies such as Tesla Turbo, Tesla Engineering, Tesla Consultores, Tesla Electromechanics, Tesla Plastics, and Tesla Smart Sport, however.
During his visit on October 22, Elon Musk met with the governor of Nuevo León and other local dignitaries. On December 8, the governor assured that, despite the fact that any contracts were confidential, “historic” investments were about to arrive and that they would be among the largest in the country’s history.
“This six year term is coming an alignment of planets for Nuevo León. Due to different global circumstances, they make me sign confidentiality contracts, so I can’t talk about more, but I can tell you halfway that historic investments are coming for Nuevo León , some of them, to give you an idea, they will be the largest investments in the history of the country,” the governor said.
On November 30, Aeroméxico announced the reactivation of its trips traveling from Monterrey to Querétaro, León, Guanajuato, and Los Angeles, California, beginning on December 15. The cross-border flights will connect the Nueve Léon with the West Coast of the United States and will contribute to strengthening the relations of the entity’s automotive businesses on the eve of Tesla’s arrival in the Mexican state.
With so few details available, there are many unanswered questions about what Tesla is up to in Mexico. Does it make sense for Tesla to build another factory when the Gigafactory in Austin is just up the road, geographically speaking? Tesla’s other factories are separated by continents. Is this a signal that Tesla is considering selling its cars in Central and South America? Or is this factory going to make components for the Austin facility?
All will be revealed in the fullness of time. When we know more, you will know more.
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