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Strengthening the Partnership: Mexico & Texas - Economic Issues in Texas Mexico Relations: Trade and energy opportunities

Thursday, April 30, 2015 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

The third program in our special 2015 series, "Strengthening the Partnership: Mexico & Texas," moves the discussion to the pocketbook. The title is "Economic Issues in Texas/Mexico Relations: Trade and Energy Opportunities."

FYI: Mexico is Texas' largest trading partner and the United States is Mexico's largest trading partner. And the highways that are key to the exchange of goods and cooperation are not just those paved for big rig wear-and-tear but also those designed for 24-hour high tech communication.

The panel for this program includes four people experienced in the challenges and the successes of the partnership of these vibrant economies. Two are based in the United States, two in Mexico, but they all have an interest in issues affecting both sides of the border.

Our panelists are:

Dr. Gustavo Vega-Canovas

Gustavo Vega-Canovas is professor of the center for International Studies in the prestigious Colegio de Mexico, where he was also director in the period 2006-2011. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale University, and a law degree from the National University of Mexico He is an expert in U.S. - Mexican economic relations and North American integration, having studied and written extensively on the topic for the past 20 years. His current line of research looks at the implications of 9/11 on the future of NAFTA and his two most recent books are Mexico and the United States, The political economy of free trade, and The North American Free Trade Agreement: a Historical Perspective and Challenges for the future, published in Spanish by El Colegio de Mexico in 2014 and 2010, respectively. He has been visiting professor at Brown, CIDE, Duke, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, The University of Texas, at Austin and Yale, among others, and has received multiple awards like the Woodrow Wilson Public Policy Fellowship, the Fulbright Scholarship, the MacArthur fellowship the Inter-American Foundation fellowship, the Yale Fellowship and the Colegio de Mexico Fellowship. Professor Vega-Canovas has been member of five binational panels under Chapter 19 of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). He is member of the National System of Researchers (SNI) of Mexico's Education Ministry.

Jorge Schiavon

Duncan Wood

DUNCAN WOOD is the director of the Mexico Institute at the Wilson Center. Prior to this, Wood was a professor and the director of the International Relations Program at the Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico (ITAM) in Mexico City for 17 years. He is a member of the Mexican National Research System (level 2), a member of the editorial board of Foreign Affairs Latinoamerica, and has been an editorial advisor to both Reforma and El Universal newspapers. In 2007, he was a non-resident Fulbright Fellow and, between 2007 and 2009, he was technical secretary of the Red Mexicana de Energia, a group of experts in the area of energy policy in Mexico. He has been a Senior Associate with the Simon Chair and the Americas Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C. His research focuses on Mexican energy policy, including renewable energy, and North American relations. He studied in the UK and Canada, receiving his PhD in political studies from Queen's University, Canada, and is a recipient of the Canadian Governor General's Visit Award for contributions to the Mexico-Canada relationship.

Alberto de la Pena

Alberto de la Peña heads the U.S.-Mexico Cross-Border practice out of the Dallas office of the firm. Alberto is licensed to practice law in Mexico, Texas and New York with more than 20 years of experience in advising companies doing business in Mexico. Alberto assists clients in a broad range of legal matters regarding Mexico cross-border transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, energy projects, aviation and maritime law, telecommunications, antitrust, corporate finance, secured transactions, acquisition and servicing of distressed debt portfolios, anti-corruption compliance, regulatory, litigation strategy, and international law.

He has represented companies in a variety of different industries, including mergers and acquisitions, energy, maritime, aviation, telecommunications, financial services, manufacturing, franchising and distribution, hospitality and real estate.

Selected Client Representations

• Represented public and private companies in mergers and acquisitions transactions related to Mexico and Latin America.

• Represented clients in contractual, transactional and regulatory work in the energy sector in Mexico.

• Assisted client in a $100 million joint venture in Mexico in the oil and gas sector.

• Represented the lenders in vessel financings in Mexico.

• Represented American and Canadian banks and companies in international financing, including lending to, and obtaining security interests in, Mexican companies and assets.

• Represented public and private telecommunications carriers in Mexico regulatory and transactional matters.

• Represented a U.S. public company in the issuance of a multi-million dollar debt in connection with Mexican legal regulations and antitrust compliance.

• Assisted client in the implementation of a compliance program, including FCPA, regarding its operations in Mexico and Latin America.

• Represented U.S. public company in the acquisition and servicing of distressed loan portfolios in Mexico and Latin America.

• Represented franchisors in corporate transactional work, regulatory, administrative filings, and trademark infringement procedures in Mexico.

• Represented clients acquiring commercial and industrial real estate in Mexico.

• Represented Mexican public and private companies with operations in the United States.

• Represented U.S. public companies and the Mexican government in cross-border litigation matters.

• Assisted arbitrator in NAFTA international arbitration regarding NAFTA regulations and commercial law.


Part of the Strengthening the Partnership: Mexico & Texas series.

In partnership with

Consulate General of Mexico in DallasThe Dallas Morning NewsMexico Institute of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

Sponsored by

Haynes and Boone, LLPAT&TAeromexicoDell ServicesRosewood Crescent DallasLatino Center for Leadership Development

Media sponsor



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6:30 PM Reception
7:00 PM Program
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Consulate General of Mexico in Dallas
1210 River Bend Drive
Dallas, TX 75247
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