Institutions, Telecommunications Reform, and Universal Service Policy in Mexico (1990–2014)

Cristina Casanueva-Reguart


The article analyzes difficulties in the design and implementation of pro-competition and universal services policies in Mexico, from the privatization of the public telephone company in 1990 to the recently approved Telecommunications and Broadcasting Reform of 2013–2014. It reviews recent literature on the expansion of Mexico’s telecommunications infrastructure, formulates its conceptual framework based on institutional theory, and proposes possible explanations for Mexico’s underperformance. Finally, it addresses the reforms of 2014, concluding that the new institutional embodiment of these reforms has begun to bear fruit: Telecommunication markets have seen a rise in their contestability, attributable to the institutional strength of the new regulatory framework. On digital inclusion, the deployment of two wholesale networks is on schedule. The Mexico Connected program has led to a 500% increase in Internet access points in public places. But there little information on whether these access points are equipped with the necessary infrastructure and personnel for developing digital skills to foster the adoption of such technologies


anti-trust, digital inclusion, institutions, telecommunications policy, regulation

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