Education and Training Sector in Mexico

Mexico has one of the largest education systems in Latin America. Approximately 34.4 million students are enrolled at different levels. According to the latest OECD reports, the government spends 22% of total public funds in education.

Market overview

Mexico is set to be the world’s 7th largest economy by 2050. The need for the Mexican workforce to move up the value chain and enhance the country’s competitiveness offers a wide range of partnership opportunities.

The compulsory basic education cycle consists of 6 years of primary schooling, followed by three years of secondary. After compulsory education, upper secondary involves three years of study, or one or more years of technical/vocational education

Key opportunities

1. Export of educational equipment and services

ICT for education aims to continue ensuring modern communication tools are available in classrooms. Opportunities include:

  • ICT tools for basic education levels.

  • Supply of interactive contents for mathematics and science courses.

  • Engineering software.

  • Laboratory equipment (testing and experimental) for secondary, technical colleges and technical universities.

Today, there are several British education companies doing business in the Mexican market, mainly through an agent/distributor.

2. Vocational training models

  • Qualifications are needed to allow the learner to gain transferable skills, knowledge and behaviours for academic progression and work readiness; competency based learning, work skills.

  • There is a need to create quality standards for workplace training. The UK will aim to increase its market share in higher education and vocational skills, facilitating institutional partnerships. A challenge is the mismatch between the curricula and work at the colleges delivering these qualifications and the industry needs.

Some members of TVET are established in the Mexican market: Cambridge ESOL English Examinations and Edexcel (Personal Life Skills, Sustainable Employability Skills, Work Placement Skills and Skills for business). Edexcel is providing certifications with a Tourism University in the Mayan Riviera.

3. Programme to strengthen higher education institutions

  • Public universities do not have the capacity to cover the total demand of students, which has boosted the creation of private universities and higher education providers.

  • According to the Ministry of Education 2010-2011 Report, higher education institutions in Mexico hold approximately 3 million students, 30% of the population at university age.

  • Some State Universities are using government funds and UK companies have secured business at this level (business simulators).

4. Private sector training possibilities

There is high competition in private sector training; courses available cover the main development areas (leadership, Personal development, Customer service, etc).

Opportunities include:

  • Online courses, principally language training, but other niche sectors have a demand for UK’s expertise – e.g. in Oil & Gas.

  • Distance learning at an academic level for MBAs (Edinburgh University has been in the market for at least three years offering their MBA programme).

  • Despite the vast range of e-learning applications in the market, still very few Mexican companies have embraced the new technologies for training purposes.

5. English Language Training

  • Cambridge ESOL and Oxford Press have been in the market for various years delivering English Language Courses and more specialised courses for Legal and Accounting firms.

Latest export opportunities Education and Training

Latest export opportunities in Mexico

Getting into the market

For the Education sector, public procurement is usually by tender. The relevant authority issues tenders according to their development plans for specific periods. It is recommended that UK companies identify suitable partners from Mexican firms wanting to participate in the tenders.

However, for general private business dealings, appointing local agents or distributors is the norm. UK companies are also encouraged to set up local offices or joint ventures to enhance their success in the market

More about doing business in Mexico


Market intelligence is critical when doing business overseas, and UKTI can provide bespoke market research and support during overseas visits though our chargeable Overseas Market Introduction Service (OMIS).

To commission research or for general advice about the market, get in touch with our specialists in country – or contact your local international trade team.

UKTI Events

UKTI runs a range of events for exporters, including seminars in the UK, trade missions to overseas markets and support for attendance at overseas trade shows.

Latest events in the Education and Training sector

Major Events

Expo Capital Humano (Corporate Training Exhibition)

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Euro Posgrados México 2012

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Expo Proveedores de Escuelas

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Useful links

More about OMIS and other UKTI services for exporters

Sectors: Education & Training
Countries: Mexico
Export Action Plan