Cost Competitive Maquiladoras

Maquilas are a good production strategy for some companies, particularly as the wages in China continue to rise and the cost-competitiveness of Mexico as a production location improves.

Maquilas leverage the tax advantages offered by Mexico for shelter organizations along with the reduced wages possible in Mexico. The first maquila to open was in Nogales, Sonora in 1967, which has led to a unique footprint of diverse companies in the region serving a number of industries – computer and electronics, apparel serving healthcare, automotive, aerospace, medical devices and consumer goods. 34,000 of Nogales Sonora’s 250,000 residents are direct employees in more than 100 maquilas located in 13 industrial parks. 55 percent of Nogales, Sonora GDP comes from manufacturing.


Learn more about how Santa Cruz County’s FTZ 60 can reduce inventory costs at the border.

Sonora’s Share Of The Mexican Maquilas


Some of the larger Sonoran maquilas are Avent, Kimberly-Clark, CR Bard, Amphenol Optimize, Becton-Dickinson, EDS, Badger Meter, Continental Automotive, MasterLock, Chamberlain, and MTD Consumer Products. Collectron and Javid de Mexico provide shelter services to US companies in Nogales, Sonora.

Maturing Maquilas Employ Quality Technical Talent

The maquilas range in size from under 20 employees to more than 5,000 employees. The talent base that supports the maquilas has matured over the past generation. This had led to an increase in quality technical/manufacturing talent in Mexico. That talent, in turn, is supported by improved Nogales-based technical colleges such as Tec de Monterrey Sede Nogales, the Instituto Tecnologico de Nogales and Universidad Tecnologica de Nogales.

Case In Point: Professional Maquila Association Builds Manufacturing Capacity

Nogales has an active maquila association that serves to bridge both sides of the border and build the capacity of regional manufacturing. Each year, the Asociacion de Maquiladoras de Sonora A.C. hosts an Expo to promote the region’s capacity.

For more information, contact the Asociacion de Maquiladoras de Sonora A.C.

Learn more about Maquila Industrial Parks in Nogales, Sonora.

Click on the map below to view maquilas in Nogales, Sonora.

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