Mariana Alvarado, Arizona Daily Star (Tucson), April 2, 2009
Hoping to entice expatriates to invest in start-up businesses south of the border, the Mexican government is putting up more than $8 million this year to help them open a store, bakery or other small business in their hometowns.
Known as the Productive Assets Project, Mexico’s aim is to help its citizens living in the U.S. get a project up and running with the hope that if expatriates return to Mexico, they have a sound business.
The government will match up to $21,500 to help start a home-based business or even construction on a shop, Martha Esquivel, of the Mexican social development office in Los Angeles, said in a telephone interview.
To be eligible, expatriates must be Mexican citizens and members of a committee of countrymen living abroad. There are no restrictions on the type of business that can qualify for the funding, Esquivel said.
The financing is not a loan, said Esquivel. The interest-free government award doesn’t have to be repaid and doesn’t require collateral.
Instead, the money awarded by the government must be reinvested in an expatriate club within three years, Esquivel said.