Odracir Barquera, director of the Mexican Association of the Automobile Industry, expressed concern about this problem in the middle of the year. “There is a severe shortage of sponsors to transport vehicles, not only in Mexico but also in the United States.”
This phenomenon has worsened in recent months and has had a significant impact on freight costs, with increases that reach 100%, according to Gerardo Macías, sales manager of the Suzuki car division.
In the past, when there was a shortage of sponsors, manufacturers used the “self-driving” method to remove vehicles from ports. However, Barquera said this practice is currently limited, leading to a greater need for long-term solutions such as acquiring more sponsors.
Both Guillermo Rosales, president of the Mexican Association of Automobile Dealers, and some manufacturers point out that “the available supply of patents does not respond as quickly to the demand that is currently required”. Macías de Suzuki estimates that the waiting time for godparents to be produced is 18 to 24 months. “If I pay a godmother in cash now, she will be given to me in two years,” he said.
Additionally, the alternatives to purchasing a godmother are limited. Vehicle manufacturers find a supplier in Puebla and a few others in the United States.
Own sponsors, operated by third parties
In response to this issue, some Chinese manufacturers have begun to explore importing patent structures from their country of origin to speed up the process. “The only way to guarantee the availability of godmothers is for them to be mine,” said a person familiar with the matter.
However, the restriction that only allows Mexican citizens and Mexican companies to provide transportation services has led some companies to consider the possibility of having the acquired transportation companies operated by their customs agents. This strategy would allow manufacturers to maintain control of conveyor belts while complying with local regulations.
“If we import the structure and pay the taxes, buy the chassis here in Mexico, then we would have our own sponsors and are looking for a partner to operate them,” the source explained.