COVID-19: Mexico includes automotive, construction and mining industries as essential and issues protocol to restart economic activities

On May 14th, the Mexican government published the protocol (in Spanish) for a gradual reopening strategy of economic, academic, and social activities. This strategy consists of three stages: 1) The municipalities that did not have Coronavirus cases could restart activities since May 18th; 2) In municipalities with cases of infection, from the 18th to the 31st of May, businesses must develop and implement a sanitary security protocol to prepare for the reopening of economic activities; 3) On June 1st, depending on the Sanitary Alert System (Sistema de Alerta Sanitaria), economic, social, and academic activities may restart. The Sanitary Alert System will function as a "stop-light" system that changes stages depending on the number of infected people and will be updated weekly by the federal government, but it is the responsibility of local governments to implement the corresponding protocols.


On May 15th, another executive order with specifications for the previously mentioned protocol was published. These specifications implied that the automotive, construction and mining industries must comply with the development and implementation of a sanitary security protocol based on the official Technical guidelines on occupational sanitary security published by the Mexican Health Ministry. This official document (in Spanish), including the description of the Sanitary Alert System, can be found here. As a mandatory requirement to restart operations, the self-evaluation format of the sanitary security protocol (contained in the official Technical guidelines from page 19 onwards), alongside a letter of commitment, must be submitted by each production site via this governmental electronic platform. Besides, the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare (STPS, in Spanish) and the Federal Commission for Protection against Sanitary Risks (COFEPRIS) may carry out inspections to verify compliance with the protocols. As soon as the businesses obtain the approval of their protocol from the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) via e-mail, they will be able to restart operations, even before June 1st.

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