The President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon, signed a Decree for Actions to Mitigate the Drought that Several Entities are Experiencing on January 25, 2012.
THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY
USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT
GAIN Report Number: MX2007
Mexico Plans to Address Exceptional Drought
Agriculture in the Economy
Agriculture in the News
Dulce Flores and Adam Branson
The President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon, signed a Decree for Actions to Mitigate the Drought that
Several Entities are Experiencing on January 25, 2012. The federal expenditures associated with the
decree and budgeted for 2012 include nearly 34 billion pesos (U.S. $2.4 billion) to mitigate the effects
of the severe drought; some of which will be directed at Mexico’s agricultural sector.
Introduction: This report summarizes an announcement published in Mexico’s Diario Oficial (Federal
Register) on January 25, 2012, to mitigate the effects of the current drought that is persisting through
most of Mexico and is the worst in the country’s recorded history.
Disclaimer: This summary is based on a cursory review of the subject announcement and therefore
should not, under any circumstances, be viewed as a definitive reading of the regulation in question, or
of its implications for U.S. agricultural export trade interests. In the event of a discrepancy or
discrepancies between this summary and the complete regulation or announcement as published in
Spanish, the latter shall prevail.
Title: Agreement by which instructions are given for actions to mitigate the effects of the drought that
several entities are experiencing.
During a speech in the state of Zacatecas on January 24, 2012, the President of Mexico, Mr. Felipe
Calderon, explained that as a result of climate change, Mexico has experienced the most severe drought
in the last 70 years (Note: recorded official information does not exist prior to this time. End note.).
The drought has affected over 1,200 municipalities across 19 states. The five most severely affected
states are Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, San Luis Potosí and Zacatecas. Drought, he explained, not
only affects family income but also the productive (i.e., agricultural) sector. In 2011, approximately 1.5
million hectares of cropland was damaged and over 60,000 head of cattle were lost.
In his speech, the President said the federal government's priority is to ensure the supply of drinking
water and basic food requirements for all families affected by the drought. As a result of the drought,
the President signed a Decree For Actions To Mitigate The Drought That Several Entities Are
Experiencing, that was published in the Federal Register on January 24, 2012. In anticipation of
continued drought throughout 2012, the Mexican federal budget includes nearly 34 billion pesos (U.S.
$2.4 billion) in support. This unprecedented reserve will be allocated to and expended by several
federal agencies and a bank focusing on development.
The strategy is summarized in several measures and is published in the Presidency blog. This strategy
entered into force on January 25, 2012, and includes several federal agencies and secretariats, including:
Social Development (SEDESOL); Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT); Finance (SH);
Economy (SE); Agriculture, Livestock, Food and Fisheries (SAGARPA); Health (SALUD); National
Water Commission (CONAGUA); and National Commission for Arid Lands (CONAZA). A summary
of the planned actions include:
1. SEDESOL and CONAGUA will expedite emergency water delivery with water tanks and
cisterns for drought-stricken communities.
2. CONAGUA has increased the activities to improve the management of basins and aquifers. A
temporary program for rehabilitating and constructing wells for domestic use will be
3. President Calderón instructed SEMARNAT, SH, and SE to adjust existing legislation so that the
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federal government is enabled to directly allocate funds without having to wait for state
government contributions as stipulated by law. Federal resources will therefore be immediately
invested in hydro-agricultural infrastructure, drinking water, drainage and sewage works.
4. President Calderon instructed SEMARNAT that under the exemptions provided by law, it should
not require environmental impact analysis of CONAGUA works dealing with this emergency, so
that construction may be sped up.
5. SALUD will reinforce monitoring and surveillance of risks and diseases associated with
drought. It will help state governments, within their respective fields of competence, to
guarantee the provision of medical services and medication supplies required by affected
6. SAGARPA and CONAZA will speed up the delivery of funds allocated for the creation of
small-scale infrastructure projects for water capture and storage in order to be ready for this
year’s anticipated rainfall. The President ordered CONAGUA to increase supervision and
inspection in order to close down construction work or building of wells built without
7. Resources will be provided to guarantee the country’s food supplies. In particular, SE will
increase subsidies for the corn flour (nixtamal) milling industry (See GAIN Report MX1036)
and will expand the import quota for dry beans (See GAIN Report MX2003).
8. SAGARPA and SH will continue promoting catastrophic insurance coverage with the strong
support of the federal government throughout 2012. The President has instructed
AGROASEMEX to ensure that damage assessment and compensation payments are carried out
swiftly and fairly. The government will intensify efforts to increase agricultural insurance
9. The development bank will continue supporting drought-affected states under preferential
conditions and as expeditiously as possible in order to maintain liquidity and stimulate the
10. The President has instructed SH to authorize drought-related program and project budgets as
soon as possible, without carrying out cost-benefit analyses, as stipulated by the law in the event
Furthermore, the Secretariat of the Interior, in coordination with other secretariats and states, will issue
natural disaster declarations for the most drought-affected municipalities. In addition, the Secretariats
of the Interior and SH will establish a special reserve fund within the Fund for Natural Disasters
(FONDEN) to ensure the timely allocation and expenditure of funds.
The Infrastructure and Safety Support Fund, established in the 2012 Federal Budget, will provide
financing for agricultural, forest, aquaculture and fishing development.
According to the President, the federal budget includes nearly 34 billion pesos (U.S. $2.4 billion) to
address the drought and is allocated as follows:
Supply water for human consumption - 2.15 billion pesos (U.S. $153.5 million).
Provide food supplies to meet essential needs - 785 million pesos (U.S. $56.0 million).
Family income protection programs - 725 million pesos (U.S. $51.7 million).
Employment support programs, mainly temporary employment programs, in affected areas - 750
million pesos (U.S. $53.5 million).
Programs, particularly farm support, to maintain production capacity in various programs
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already in progress under SAGARPA - over 14 billion pesos (U.S. $1.0 billion).
Programs for water management and the sustainable use of natural resources (e.g., reactivation
of wells and modernization of irrigation canals to prevent evaporation or seepage) - 4 billion
pesos (U.S. $285.7 million).
Insurance coverage programs to pay insured farmers that had damage in 2011 and those likely to
have claims in 2012 - 2.8 billion pesos (U.S. $200 million).
Financing programs - 8.4 billion pesos (U.S. $600 million).
For More Information:
FAS/Mexico Web Site: We are available at www.mexico-usda.com or visit the FAS headquarters'
home page at www.fas.usda.gov for a complete selection of FAS worldwide agricultural reporting.
Report Subject Date
MX2003 Mexico Looks to Increase Imports of Dry Beans 1/18/2012
MX1036 Mexico Updates Support Program for Corn-Dough (Nixtamal) 5/6/2011
MX1032 Sustainable Modernization of Traditional Agriculture… 4/27/2011
MX1012 Hard Freeze Damages Sinaloa Corn and Produce 2/11/2011
Useful Mexican Web Sites: Mexico's equivalent to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (SAGARPA)
can be found at www.sagarpa.gob.mx , equivalent to the U.S. Department of Commerce (SE) can be
found at www.economia.gob.mx and equivalent to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (SALUD)
can be found at www.salud.gob.mx. These web sites are mentioned for the readers' convenience but
USDA does NOT in any way endorse, guarantee the accuracy of, or necessarily concur with, the
information contained on the mentioned sites.
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