This week, Mexico Infrastructure & Sustainability Review spoke to Fernando Vazquez and Javier Pascual, Directors General of Grupo TADCO to get their perspective on the Mexican infrastructure industry today, their experience working on megaproject NAIM and where they see the future going for the company and the country.
Q: What are the main factors that will differentiate companies within the infrastructure industry in the next few years?
JP: We are betting on three different factors for our future development: technology, innovation and PPPs. In the future, projects will not be delivered on paper but on disks and flash drives. Technologies such as BIM and REVIT will push disruption within the construction sector and push the country forward. It is also surprising that in some projects or areas we are still constructing using the same methodologies as we did years ago. This is why it is vital that we innovate in our construction systems and bring change to the sector by integrating new materials that are more sustainable and that will not only cut down construction times but also increase safety.
Q: Why is it so difficult to retain human capital within the construction and engineering sectors in Mexico?
FV: Within the construction sector, the turnaround of human capital is becoming a real challenge. There is a great amount of competition within the industry because these new generations are embracing more skills, especially through technology. Grupo TADCO has experienced many challenges with the fast pace of technology. People who are continuously learning and training themselves are in high demand from all companies, therefore creating a gap. We are at an important juncture and the sector has to adapt quickly. We see a great opportunity in the niche of BIM and REVIT.
JP: Millennials are particularly difficult to understand. They are more worried about the human aspects of a company, more than just the compensation. They want more time out of the office and want to have more freedom. The company decided to offer more flexible working hours and home office to adapt to the needs of new generations.
Q: Why are there not more international firms participating in infrastructure projects in Mexico?
JP: The presence of corruption and the lack of transparency in various government processes scares many international players. They believe that Latin American countries have high corruption, creating a large barrier to entry. Many international companies have had the experience of investing in tenders only to discover the tender was manipulated. PPPs will professionalize the system and eliminate these barriers for international companies.
FV: We have to build trust within the sector and once we achieve that, more international companies will be looking at Mexico for opportunities.
Q: What has been Grupo TADCO’s experience working with SACMAG and NACO in the supervision of NAIM?
JP: The main challenge we are facing is the terrain. It has been incredibly difficult to stabilize the location’s subsoil to a point where both NACO and the CICM have decided to stop fighting nature and work in phases. We want it to sink homogeneously and for this we designed each part of the airport with more than 10,000 specialized instruments. We implement an observation method in which we benchmark each and every instrument to ensure the equal sinking of the terrain and that it is behaving as it was expected to in theory.
Q: What legacy does Grupo TADCO want to leave in Mexico and what are its expansion plans?
JP: Grupo TADCO wants to collaborate with more international companies and provide an added value with our in-depth knowledge of not only the industry but of the country. This is why we have been able to create alliances with European and US companies. We understand how the government operates, which is a great strength that these new companies need to be successful in Mexico. We want to show that Mexican companies can integrate this cutting-edge technology into infrastructure projects and that they have a great deal to offer to the international market. Our alliance with SACMAG, for instance, has allowed us to begin working in some South American countries through their offices in Bolivia, Peru and Argentina.
This is an exclusive of the 2018 edition of Mexico Infrastructure & Sustainability Review. If you want to get all the information, plus other relevant insights regarding this industry, pre-order your copy of Mexico Infrastructure & Sustainability Review 2019 or access the digital copy of the 2018 edition.