Mexico: Competition Assessment Project


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Increased competition can improve a country’s economic performance, open business opportunities and reduce the cost of goods and services to the benefit of consumers. However, numerous laws and regulations can restrict competition in the marketplace. 

In Mexico, regulatory constraints are a reason for weak competition. According to the OECD Product Market Regulation index, the Mexican markets are one the most heavily regulated within OECD members. 

Identifying competition-distorting rules and provisions in Mexico's legislation is therefore key to help the country improve its productivity and growth.


About the project 

Between July 2016 and January 2018, the OECD carried out a thorough and independent policy assessment in Mexico to identify rules and regulations that may hinder the efficient functioning of markets in the sectors of medicines and meat.  


The process

Making use of the methodology in the Competition Assessment Toolkit, a project team composed of competition experts, economists and lawyers from OECD and the Mexican Ministry of Economy, conducted an assessment of the regulations potentially restricting competition along the value chain of the designated sectors and proposed specific recommendations for change.

In the medicines sector, the project team analysed the relevant federal legislation of Mexico covering manufacturing, wholesale as well as retail of medicines and food supplements. In the meat subsector (beef, pork, chicken) the project team scrutinized federal legislation covering farm product raw material and farm supplies wholesale, slaughtering and meat processing activities, pet food manufacturing, and grocery wholesale and retail sales. The investigation also included support activities for the raising of livestock, such as logistics activities, warehousing and transport activities with regard to meat.


Building capacity

During the project the OECD held a series of workshops to build the capacity of Mexican officials from the government to conduct competition assessment, in line with international best practices, through the application of the Competition Assessment Toolkit. A first workshop introducing the Competition Assessment Toolkit was held with more than 100 officials on 21 September 2016 explaining the main principles applied during the project. A second workshop on 9 April 2017 dealt with qualitative and quantitative in-depth analysis. The substantive knowledge gained can then be applied to similar exercises in other sectors or to new laws and regulations.


Competition ‌Assessment Toolkit

Helping governments eliminate barriers to competition 

The OECD Competition Assessment Toolkit was designed to help governments eliminate barriers to competition through a method that identifies unnecessary restraints on market activities and develops alternative, less restrictive measures that still achieve government policy objectives. 

The toolkit has been used by Tunisia (2023), Brazil (2022), Iceland (2020), Portugal Vol I | Vol II (2018), Greece (2013, 2014, 2017) and Romania (2016) to identify barriers to competition in selected sectors of their economies. Mexico is the third country to undergo a Competition Assessment Review of its laws and regulation on selected sectors and Portugal is also working on an assessment of 5 different sectors. Learn more about the Competition Assessment toolkit and related projects

The toolkit is composed of 3 volumes: Principles, Guidance and Operational Manual. The first two volumes are available in more than 17 languages. 

View the text of the toolkit

competition assessment toolkit volume 1‌ 

Vol. 1 Principles

Competition Assessment Toolkit Volume 2 cover

Vol. 2 Guidance

Competition Assessment Volume 3 cover 

Vol. 3 Operational Manual

See also

More Competition work on Mexico

More OECD Work on Mexico

OECD Competition Main Page

9 January 2018 - Mexico City

Read the report  Read the highlights brochure 

OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría presented the results of the Review to over 200 participants in Mexico City on 9 January 2018. 



Project Timeline

Launched in July 2016, the assessment took place in five stages:


Initial mapping of all relevant legislation in the sectors of medicines and meat.


Scan of legislation to identify potential obstacles to competition.


In-depth analysis of the selected regulations to assess the harm to competition. This has been qualitative and, where possible, quantitative to demonstrate the potential economic benefits from lifting any identified barriers to competition.


Formulation of recommendations for the redesign or even abolishment of regulations shown to be harmful to competition. 


Publication of a final report with recommendations for redesigning regulations launched in January 2018.




Mexico: Strengthening the competition and regulation framework 

This multi-year project aims to improve the competitiveness of the Mexican economy by reforming and modifying the regulatory and institutional framework to support higher levels of investment, employment and growth. Read more...




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