By RICARDO CASTILLO
Indigenous Design Rights
International fashion design houses Louis Vuitton and Pineda Covalín are now in negotiations with the Mexican government to pay intellectual and creative rights to the country’s indigenous people after having copied some of their original designs without paying the corresponding copyrights.
Legislative changes in Mexico, said Senator Susana Harp, include placing the indigenous communities at the center of the negotiation so that they are taken into consideration and can market their designs.
“Of course, they want to sell and have resources,” she said. “This is not about prohibition. It’s about dialogue and having buyers for what they can get. We want to establish fair trade practices for indigenous people.”
Harp went on to say: “This is a matter of fair trade for all because these companies want to do things well, with a new perspective, which is not just fair trade, but respectful trade.”
For decades, fashion designers have copied Mexican indigenous designs without paying rights, “but all that is changing now,” Harp said.
Remittances from Mexicans living and working in the United States reached a total of $38.48 billion during 2019, an amount 7 percent higher than the comparable figure for 2018, when the total was $33.677 billion, the central Bank of Mexico (Banxico) reported this week.
Banxico defines remittances as the cash transfers that a migrant worker sends back to his country of origin.
In the case of Mexico, the cash goes directly to the migrant’s family.
Their importance of remittances that they are a source of hard cash and an additional income for families.
The states with the largest dependence on remittances are Michoacan, Oaxaca, Zacatecas, Guerrero and Nayarit, with the bulk of them made through electronic transfers.
Banxico said that it expects that the upward trend will continue unabated during 2020.
Growth Forecast at 1.1
A poll carried out by Banxico with financial consultants said that the majority of financial experts believe that that Mexico’s gross domestic product for 2020 will grow by 1.1 percent.
The polled analysts took into consideration the issues of insecurity and political uncertainty as related to the economy, which are the actions that can stall productive activity.
Also, the forecast for inflation was adjusted to a maximum of 3.5 percent, similar as to that of 2019.
Interest rates, some of the highest in the world, will be kept at a similar level as they currently stand, as they did not budge during December.
Banxico said that the interest rate in Mexico will close at 6.5 percent next December.
Outside Interests at the UNAM
National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) dean Enrique Graue held a press conference to announce that the masked vandals that attacked the university’s main building will be unmasked and to say that he believes that the alleged students are being financed by interests outside the university, who want to destabilize its studies.
The announcement was made while still seven preparatory schools and four university career schools were in a studies stoppage.
The university has filed suit to carry out an investigation by “competent authorities,” hoping that they will “investigate the deeds in depth, unmask the provocateurs and punish those found responsible.”
In his 12 minute-message- which included the presence of the director of the School of Philosophy and Literature, whose building is occupied by alleged women’s rights defenders, Graue said the “provocateurs will not get us to scale up violence with violence to support their spurious pretense” of destabilizing the university.
Seade, Stranded in HK
Mexican Foreign Relations Undersecretary for North America Ambassador Jesús Seade tweeted that he went to Hong Kong to promote the almost-approved (Canada has not yet signed) United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), but the got caught up in the fray of the cancellation of over 1,000 flights out of Hong Kong.
Seade, however, said he feels “at home” in Hong Kong because he previously worked as associate vice president for international affairs at Shen Zhen University, and was also vice dean and professor emeritus at Lingnan University in Hong Kong.
“Now I’m just waiting for the Mexican Embassy to board me on a flight so I can return to Mexico,” he said.