MEXICO CITY, June 22 (Xinhua) -- Mexico's exports and manufacturing industry gained momentum in the last six months, giving the country's economy a lift.
Mexico's National Statistics Agency (NSA) reported this week the country's exports registered a year-on-year growth of 23.6 percent in the first quarter, up from 7.3 percent a quarter earlier.
In response, Banamex, Mexico's second largest bank, commented that "the rapid expansion of auto sales overseas and growth in manufacturing are pushing export growth."
The most significant manufacturing growth was registered in the production of cars and trucks, which was completely pushed by U.S. demand.
There are also signs of recovery in maquilas, the country's small factories that import raw materials or semi-finished goods and export consumer goods to the United States.
"The auto sector is showing growing exports and production," Carlos Gonzalez Martinez, chief economist at Scotiabank Inverlat, told Xinhua, adding that "maquila employment is also showing a small recovery over the last two or three months."
The Mexican Auto Industry Association reported this month that auto production surged 65.3 percent in May compared with a year earlier, while exports increased 73.9 percent.
Also in June, the NSA reported that employment by manufacturers, maquilas, and export service providers, the so-called IMMEX grouping, climbed 6.2 percent in March compared with a year earlier. In Chihuahua, a state most closely linked to U.S.-bound exports, IMMEX employment rose by 14.1 percent.