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4. Barriers to investment
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Mexico still maintains a "restricted zone" (100 kilometers wide from the borders and 50 kilometres wide from the coast) in which direct foreign ownership of land is prohibited. Although foreigners can purchase the land in the "restricted zone" by trust through Mexican banks, they should register in advance with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the purchased land can not be used for inhabitancy. Without ownership of the land, the purchaser has only the right to use the land. Moreover, in Mexico there are no measures similar to the ownership guarantee insurance to safeguard the interests of foreigners after they purchased the land.

Mexico restricts the ratio of foreign investment in its telecommunication industry. The highest ratio of direct foreign investment in companies providing telecom network and services is 49 percent. In the Mexican telecommunication market, its domestic company 'Telmex' enjoys a dominant position and other foreign companies find it hard to compete with it.

The Mexican Labor Law stipulates that the ratio between foreign employees and Mexican employees in a foreign company should not be higher than 1:8. In principle, the company's technical personnel or professionals should be Mexicans, and only when there are no qualified Mexicans to fit the positions can foreigners be employed temporarily.

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