Luis Ernesto Derbez
Luis Ernesto Derbez Bautista (born April 1, 1947 in Mexico City
Mexico City
Mexico City is the Federal District , capital of Mexico and seat of the federal powers of the Mexican Union. It is a federal entity within Mexico which is not part of any one of the 31 Mexican states but belongs to the federation as a whole...

) is a Mexican
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 politician and current rector
The word rector has a number of different meanings; it is widely used to refer to an academic, religious or political administrator...

 of the Universidad de Las Américas
Fundación Universidad de las Américas, Puebla
Universidad de las Américas Puebla , is a private university in Mexico. It is located in San Andrés Cholula, Puebla, a suburb of Puebla. The university is known for its programs in Arts and Humanities, Social sciences, Science and Engineering, and Business and Economics...


Upon assuming power in December 2000, President
President of Mexico
The President of the United Mexican States is the head of state and government of Mexico. Under the Constitution, the president is also the Supreme Commander of the Mexican armed forces...

 Vicente Fox
Vicente Fox
Vicente Fox Quesada is a Mexican former politician who served as President of Mexico from 1 December 2000 to 30 November 2006 and currently serves as co-President of the Centrist Democrat International, an international organization of Christian democratic political parties.Fox was elected...

 chose him to serve as his Secretary of Economy
Secretary of Economy (Mexico)
In Mexico, the Secretariat of Economy is the government department in charge of economic affairs...

. In January 2003, following the resignation of Jorge Castañeda, Derbez took over as Secretary of Foreign Affairs
Secretary of Foreign Affairs (Mexico)
In Mexico, the Secretary of Foreign Affairs is a member of the federal executive cabinet with responsibility for implementing the country's foreign policy. The secretary is appointed by the President of the Republic and heads the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs ...

, a position that he held until President Vicente Fox
Vicente Fox
Vicente Fox Quesada is a Mexican former politician who served as President of Mexico from 1 December 2000 to 30 November 2006 and currently serves as co-President of the Centrist Democrat International, an international organization of Christian democratic political parties.Fox was elected...

's term ended on December 1, 2006.

He was one of the contenders seeking the vacant position of Secretary General
Secretary General of the Organization of American States
According to the Charter of the Organization of American States:-Secretaries General of the OAS:-Assistant Secretaries General of the OAS:*William Manger *William Sanders...

 of the Organization of American States
Organization of American States
The Organization of American States is a regional international organization, headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States...

. He withdrew and Chile
Chile ,officially the Republic of Chile , is a country in South America occupying a long, narrow coastal strip between the Andes mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far...

's Interior Minister José Miguel Insulza
José Miguel Insulza
José Miguel Insulza Salinas is a Chilean politician and statesman. He is currently the Secretary General of the Organization of American States. He is nicknamed El Panzer, for his tank-like drive and reputation due to his ability to take political heat with little apparent damage...

 won the position.

Since January 2007, Luis Ernesto Derbez has been the General Director of the Centre for Globalization, Competitiveness and Democracy at the Instituto Tecnológico de Monterrey
Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education
The Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education commonly shortened as Monterrey Institute of Technology or Monterrey Tech is one of the largest private, nonsectarian and coeducational multi-campus universities in...

, Campus Santa Fe, and Secretary for International Affairs of the PAN
Partido Acción Nacional
Partido Acción Nacional may refer to:* National Action Party * National Action Party * National Action Party * National Action Party...

. Between January 2003 and December 2006, he was the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mexico; and between December 2000 and December 2002, he was the Minister of Economy. From July to November 2000, he chaired President-elect Vicente Fox transition team, which defined Mexico's 2000-2006 economic and social programs.

Prior to joining Fox's Presidential campaign team in 1997, Derbez had a distinguished professional and academic career working for the World Bank
World Bank
The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to developing countries for capital programmes.The World Bank's official goal is the reduction of poverty...

 Group, the Inter-American Development Bank
Inter-American Development Bank
The Inter-American Development Bank is the largest source of development financing for Latin America and the Caribbean...

, Johns Hopkins University
Johns Hopkins University
The Johns Hopkins University, commonly referred to as Johns Hopkins, JHU, or simply Hopkins, is a private research university based in Baltimore, Maryland, United States...

's School of Advanced International Studies and Instituto Tecnológico de Monterrey. He also did consulting work for some of Mexico's leading private sector companies such as Alfa, Vitro, Visa, and FEMSA. As head of the Ministries of Economy and Foreign Affairs, Derbez has vigorously increased the country's presence in world business and political affairs.

Political career

As Minister of Economy, Derbez was in charge of Mexico's international trade negotiations. In 2001, he finalized the trade agreement between China and Mexico which allowed China's accession to the World Trade Organization
World Trade Organization
The World Trade Organization is an organization that intends to supervise and liberalize international trade. The organization officially commenced on January 1, 1995 under the Marrakech Agreement, replacing the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade , which commenced in 1948...

 (WTO), and led the Mexican team which defined the terms for a Free Trade Agreement between Mexico and Japan; in 2004 the FTA was signed. At the 2001 WTO's Ministerial Meetings in Qatar he was a member of the Director's Team which successfully negotiated the start of the Doha Development Round. Following his participation, Derbez became the Chairman-elect for WTO's 2003 Ministerial Meeting. As such, during 2002 and 2003 he co-chaired preparatory Ministerial Meetings in Mexico, Sydney, Geneva, Sharm-el-Sheik, and Paris. In September 2003, Derbez chaired the WTO Ministerial Meeting which produced the so named Cancun Text that served as the basic text for follow up negotiations at the 2005 WTO's Hong Kong Ministerial Meeting. During that period, Derbez also played a key role in the successful outcome of the U.N. International Conference on Financing for Development held in Monterrey, Mexico, where developed nations agreed to contribute 0.7% of its GDP in development aid by the year 2015. Derbez also chaired the 2002 APEC Meeting in Los Cabos, Baja California.

In domestic issues, as Minister of Economy, Derbez proposed ten industrial policy programs for key sectors of the Mexican economy. By 2005, over $10 billion in new investments were attracted by those programs in the automotive, electronics, and maquiladora industries, allowing the nation to regain some of its presence in world markets despite the failure to reach structural economic reforms sought by the Fox government. He also created the Undersecretariat for Medium and Small Enterprises, and launched the successful Microcredit program PRONAFIM, which by 2005 had financed over 1.5 million microcredits.

As Minister of Foreign Affairs, Derbez has strengthened Mexico’s bilateral and multilateral relations with the USA and Canada. Today, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is a key player in the negotiations to improve NAFTA. Its work has led to a program entitled Security and Prosperity Agreement (ASPAN for its acronym in Spanish), launched in 2003 in Waco, Texas, by the three leaders of the North American countries. One of the major results of ASPAN was the constitution of a private-public Competitiveness Council which is defining sector specific policies to standardize the region's economic environment. Derbez has also played a key role in shaping the migration reform debate in the US by organizing and leading a group of 10 Latin American countries (from Mexico to Ecuador), which has presented a common position in discussions with key Senators and Representatives of the US Congress.

Reversing a 15 year trend, Derbez has refocused Mexico's policy towards Latin America. At the sub-regional level, increased cooperation with the seven Central American countries has resulted in the creation of the Mesoamerican Group, which currently defines common sub-regional policies in energy development, border security, fight against organized crime, and regional infrastructure. Under Derbez's leadership, Mexico gained associated status in the Andean Countries Group and MERCOSUR, while at the same time signed a strategic, political, and economic alliance with Chile. On the other hand, he gave high priority to the Asia Pacific region. In addition to the FTA with Japan, Mexico created a Ministerial Level Commission with China, the only one of this kind that China has. Under his leadership, Mexico initiated negotiations agreements with India's government in the technology and pharmaceutical sectors.

While representing Mexico at the UN Security Council during the Iraq crisis, Derbez realized that a major overhaul of the UN system was required. In 2004, Mexico invited 15 nations to form a group called Friends of the Reform, to propose administrative and organizational changes for the UN. He also organized another 16 nations into a group named United for a Consensus, to propose reforms to the UN Security Council. The proposals of both groups played a major role in the reform decisions approved by the UN Assembly on September 2005.

Other affiliations

Derbez was a member of the Board of Directors of PEMEX and Pemex International (PMI), Banco Nacional de Comercio Exterior (Bancomext), and Mexico's Science and Technology Council (CONACYT). In 2001 and 2002, he was Chairman of the Board for Exportadora de Sal, S.A. and Transportes de Sal, S.A., joint ventures between the Mexican Government and the Mitsubishi Corporation.

Derbez is a member of Sigma-Xi and Phi-Kappa-Phi, and was granted by Iowa State University its Distinguished Achievement Alumni Award in 2006, the first time ever given to a non-US national. He has published many articles and book chapters, and has lectured extensively in many countries. He speaks fluently Spanish, English and French.

Born in 1947, Derbez is married and has 2 daughters. He holds a B.A. in Economics from the Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí
Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí
The Autonomous University of San Luis Potosí is a public university in Mexico. It is the largest university in the state of San Luis Potosí...

  (1970). He was awarded the Fulbright-Haynes Scholarship and completed a Master's degree in Economics from University of Oregon (1974). He finished a Ph.D. in Economics at Iowa State of Science and Technology (1980).


  • Bachelor's degree in economics
    Economics is the social science that analyzes the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. The term economics comes from the Ancient Greek from + , hence "rules of the house"...

    , Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí
    Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí
    The Autonomous University of San Luis Potosí is a public university in Mexico. It is the largest university in the state of San Luis Potosí...

    , San Luis Potosí, San Luis Potosí
    San Luis Potosí, San Luis Potosí
    San Luis Potosí, commonly called SLP or simply San Luis, is the capital of, and most populous city in the Mexican state of the same name. The city lies at an elevation of 1,850 meters...

  • Master's degree in economics and industrial organization, University of Oregon
    University of Oregon
    -Colleges and schools:The University of Oregon is organized into eight schools and colleges—six professional schools and colleges, an Arts and Sciences College and an Honors College.- School of Architecture and Allied Arts :...

    , United States
    United States
    The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

  • Doctorate in economics, Iowa State University
    Iowa State University
    Iowa State University of Science and Technology, more commonly known as Iowa State University , is a public land-grant and space-grant research university located in Ames, Iowa, United States. Iowa State has produced astronauts, scientists, and Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners, along with a host of...

    , United States

External links

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