Slight recovery, breath, a light at the end of the tunnel. The Federal Expenditure Budget Project (PPEF) 2023 can be described as a discreet or incipient recovery for the institutions and entities that have to do with the telecommunications sector in Mexico.
The strong cuts and austerity of the years 2020, 2021 and 2022 – undoubtedly caused by the pandemic – seem to have been left behind, but in most cases without recovering the budget levels prior to the pandemic, except in very precise institutions supported by the government.
From the recent review of each of the institutions and dependencies involved in the telecommunications sector, a classification can be obtained from those that are recovering, those that are strengthened, those that are forgotten, and those that are mysterious. All this, based on the data obtained from the Economic Programmatic Functional Analysis and the Economic Administrative Analysis of the PPEF, according to the table shown as part of this article. Let’s see each case.
Those who recover:
The Federal Institute of Telecommunications (IFT), chaired by Javier Juárez Mojica, an autonomous constitutional body that has been frequently questioned and attacked by President AMLO, will have a slight recovery of 7.69% in its budget for 2023, remaining at 1,680 million pesos, compared to 1,560 million pesos in 2022.
The other institution that recovers slightly is the Telecommunications Investment Promotion Agency (Promtel), directed by María de Lourdes Coss, dependent on the Secretariat of Infrastructure, Communications and Transportation (SICT) and responsible for monitoring the installation of the Shared Network of Altán Redes, now commanded by Carlos Lerma. By 2023, Promtel will exercise 141.4 million pesos, an increase of 2.1%, but still far from its best budget of 173.8 million pesos (2018).
The first strengthened entity is the Coordination of the National Digital Strategy (EDN) of the Office of the Presidency of the Republic, headed by Emiliano Calderón. Its budget for next year will be 44 million pesos, clearly insufficient to execute the EDN that was published in September 2021, and that has not had a greater impact and repercussion on the digitization of Mexico.
The most favored state company is CFE Telecomunicaciones e Internet para Todos, a production company affiliated with the Federal Electricity Commission, which will enjoy a budget of 10,911 million pesos, mainly for the deployment of infrastructure and the installation of antennas in areas and localities without telephone service and mobile Internet.
In this space we report that President López Obrador expects CFE TEIT to install 5,000 antennas, supported by the Army by identifying military barracks and camps to install towers and bring the Internet to various populations.
The surprise and who is doing better is Telecomunicaciones de México (Telecomm), directed by María del Rocío Mejía. In 2023 it will have a budget of 1,173 million pesos, the largest in its history, an increase of 53.4% compared to 2022.
Telecomm depends on the SICT and offers telecommunications and financial services through 1,700 telegraph branches. It operates the Bicentennial Satellite of the Mexsat Satellite System to offer security, government, education, health and economic services. It also has a fiber optic network. Recently, it enabled 47 branches where the state company CFE Telecomunicaciones e Internet para Todos began to sell its SIM cards with the mobile phone service.
By the way, the Satellite System will have 133.4 million pesos allocated for 2023. Currently, the capacity of the Bicentennial Satellite is at 100%, occupied by national security agencies and for social coverage in geographical areas where commercial telecommunications operators do not arrive.
The Federal Commission for Economic Competition (Cofece), chaired by Brenda Gisela Hernández, deserves a separate mention, not because it regulates the telecommunications sector, but because it has begun to get involved in the regulation of certain digital services and companies. Its budget will be 689.9 million pesos, and it is the institution that has had the most budgetary stability. Despite the attacks from the Federal Executive and the omission in the appointment of commissioners to complete the Plenary Session of Cofece, it is striking that so far the 4T government has not reduced its budget.
The main forgotten office is the Coordination of the Information and Knowledge Society of the SICT, formerly responsible for the Connected Mexico program that came to install 101,000 public Internet sites. It preserves a few budget crumbs of 19.6 million pesos for personal services, that is, to pay some people who survive in that instance despite the fact that it no longer operates.
The Mexican Space Agency, led by Salvador Landeros Ayala, is responsible for sustaining a sovereign and sustainable space infrastructure for earth observation, navigation, and broadband satellite communications. It will have a budget of 68.9 million pesos, an improvement over the last four years, but without reaching the 2014 figure (112.8 million pesos).
The mysterious entity is the Undersecretary of Communications of the SICT. Despite the fact that President AMLO announced his disappearance since August 2020, he continues to appear in the 2021, 2022 and 2023 budgets with operating expenses and personal services (salaries). For 2023, it has been assigned 199.9 million pesos.
At the time, the secretary Jorge Arganis Díaz, head of the SCT, clarified that “we have a restructuring, the Undersecretary of Communications is going to disappear, the office, but not the functions, we are going to rearrange those.” In its splendor (2015), the Undersecretariat for Communications had resources of 7,915 million pesos.
Finally, the General Directorate of Telecommunications and Broadcasting Policy of the SICT will tend to
It will be an amount of just 58.6 million pesos, to outline the telecommunications policy of the government of the Fourth Transformation.
|National Digital Strategy||25.8||29.1||20.1||19.5||21.4||16.8||12.3||14.7||42.4||44|
|Undersecretary of Communications||3,260,6||7,915.2||3,646,8||1,463.8||346.7||114.4||79.9||142.4||142.4||199.9|
|Directorate General for Telecommunications and Broadcasting Policy||2,808||2,809||85.2||89.8||149.3||112.3||103.3||91.2||55.8||58.6|
|Coordination of the Information and Knowledge Society||2,420,9||2,421.3||1,814.7||293.1||517.6||624.4||482,8||18.2||17.7||19.6|
|Mexican Space Agency||112.8||111.9||90.4||92.4||77.8||62.4||67.6||63.6||65.8||68.9|
|SOURCE: PPEF 2023|
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