“Mexico continues to be a truly outstanding investment” Enrique Zorrilla, director of Scotiabank


Policy decisions classified as “highly controversial” have generated a complex environment that could result in a significant contraction in the country’s investment, highlighting the 2019 economic outlook of this banking institution.

The political and social change that Mexico is going through has not changed the investment prospects of Scotiabank, one of the banks with the largest presence in the country. But to give certainty of the economic direction of the country and with it to drive private investment in all sectors, it is necessary to have a clearer picture of the medium and long term.

Policy decisions classified as “highly controversial”, such as the cancellation of the Texcocoairport , and events such as fuel shortages have created a complex environment that could translate into a significant contraction in the country’s investment, highlights the economic outlook of 2019 this banking institution.

In that sense, it is “urgent” to land perfectly clear measures or rules that facilitate or deploy investment in the country, says Enrique Zorrilla, general director of the bank of Canadian origin.

“Mexico continues to be a truly outstanding alternative in investment, it is very important to maintain and maintain that degree of attractiveness. First, there is macroeconomic stability and fiscal discipline; second, investment incentives, we know that public investment will not be enough, private, local and international investment is required, investment that brings cutting-edge technology that generates value, that generates aspirations of local and international commercial markets ” said the executive.

In the middle of a transition process to leave his position in front of this banking institution in Mexico and focus on institutional relations and with authorities from the general direction of Grupo Financiero Scotiabank; Zorrilla; In an interview with Forbes Mexico, he reviews the “attractions” of Mexico as a destination for national and foreign private investment and the challenges of banking in a country in which seven out of every 10 Mexicans are integrated into the financial system.

Mexico is going through a process of political and even social change with the integration of the first left government in the country, from the perspective of Scotiabank. Is Mexico still an attractive country for investment?

“Let’s talk about its attractions. If you consider that we have a set of trade agreements between them, the Treaty between Mexico United States Canada (T-MEC) renewed with one of the largest economies in the world and the geography so powerful including Canada and Mexico; that we have a collection of commercial treaties; If you consider that we still have a very important demographic bonus that is an outstanding capital, the goal is to get the most out of this number of Mexicans of working age, with youth, power, preparation; if you consider additionally the demographic bonus in terms of the capacity to generate wealth, but additionally that we are a population of 120 million in terms of a domestic market for consumption purposes;

“I would tell you that of course Mexico has a great attraction and for a financial institution like ours that is more than 185 years old and that is in Mexico, we have just invested 200 million dollars in all our new technological platform, we are in this country for the medium and long term “.

“We have just concluded an investment of 220 million dollars the total, about 300 because we are talking about the lack of real estate investment in this building, in our branches, we have just confirmed for the next two years another 100 (million dollars) , also in technological platforms of corporate corporate banking and private banking “

What are the challenges of banking in the country? Taking into account that the level of financial integration of the country is still low.

“Investments have been to strengthen our technology platform and in that sense enable our digital evolution, the way to reach more customers more efficiently. We are not going to open another thousand branches, but to open a thousand and one ways to hire customers in a more efficient way. I believe that banking as a whole has had an emphasis in particular on regulatory control, money laundering, identification and authentication of clients, complete files, all this very physically, very manually, technology gives us the opportunity to compete under another perspective of the customer experience, a fast rewarding experience, 24/7 that you do not need to enter the branch, that is the vision of Scotiabank and we are planning our growth “.

“We have a genuinely very friendly brand, very close, very empathetic. Traditionally, Scotiabank has been involved in long-term financing, both in companies, in the expansion of structures, in capacity expansion, in permanent working capital, and in families and individuals. We have been closely linked to mortgage and auto financing, both the auto and mortgage are equity financing to create value for your wealth enrichment “.

“On those bases is how we plan to build a broader relationship, both investment and what could be the most credit and short-term credit.”

One of the first initiatives announced in the Congress of the Union was focused on the reduction of bank fees. The senators have mentioned that agreements have already been generated around this opinion and that they will soon pass.

There have been approaches through the Association of Banks of Mexico (ABM) and I believe that there are already very advanced conversations, we still think that the commissions are the reflection of service of a borrowed transaction that deserves a price and pays for the benefit of this transactionality.

Evidently, with the access of more and better technology, the commissions have come down, we see it in the SPEI, in card commissions, account statements, etc. And we believe that much more presence of the digital technology of the bonding of the clients and with greater competition, there is space for a reduction in the commission’s consequence of that.

The talks in the Senate are on the line just to find space in the price scheme.

Something that is worrisome is the demonization of the commission as if it should be free per se.

What I think is important is that the technology in scale, the commissions, the long-term financing, given the levels of inflation that we lived in past years, is a natural evolution in the search to get closer to customers.

In 2018 there was much uncertainty about the country’s economic course due to the renegotiation of NAFTA, the presidential elections and other external factors. In 2019, where should the focus be on both the government and the private sector?

The focus should be on our ability to grow, on the transparency of the rules that allow us to channel and take advantage of domestic and foreign investment, it is clear that public investment is not enough, we need private investment. The private sector represents 75% of the Gross Domestic Product, exports right now are growing very significantly, that is, taking advantage of the economic situation of our main commercial client, the United States.

In that sense it seems to me that it is time to focus on the incentives that truly contribute to greater investment, consolidation of the foundations to grow in our economy, that give us more employment, that give us in that sense a greater wealth distributed, more power in international markets, which allow us to access technologies that we would not otherwise have access to.

There have always been public and private investment projects, to which I refer is the focus that maximizes and optimizes the flow of investment in our country in terms again that our country, is still an attractive capital, I think it has an attractive outstanding. Let’s not waste those attributes.