The Dual Year of UK and Mexico 2015, formally announced by HRH The Prince of Wales and President Enrique Peña Nieto, saw an unprecedented showcase of events in both countries, built around three pillars: arts and creative economy; education science and innovation; and trade, investment and tourism.
Mexico’s programme, covering cities throughout the UK, involved collaborations with 150 partners in the public and private sectors.
The simultaneous Year of UK in Mexico, organised in partnership with the British Embassy and UKTI and with major support from HSBC, Diageo, Shell and EY, involved close to 400 events and programmes in all 32 states. Attended by 1.5 million people and with a media reach of 1.3 billion.
The UK was Guest of Honour at several festivals, most notably the Guadalajara International Book Fair but also at the country’s main theatre festivals, at Mexico City’s Science and Technology Week and at Baja California’s Agricultural Fair.
The Arts & Creative Economy strand included major events such as Tate’s Landscapes exhibition at the National Museum of Art, a tour by the London Philharmonic Orchestra, contemporary exhibitions featuring 6 Turner Prize winners, and a social inclusion programme centring around dance.
The Trade & Investment strand, led by UKTI, helped secure 38 contracts worth £214m and assisted 1,000 British companies to access the Mexican market.
The Dual Year reinforced the sense that the UK and Mexico are like-minded long-term strategic partners on global issues, keen to work more closely together. It strengthened the UK’s positive reputation in Mexico and promoted recognition of the UK as an innovative, vibrant and diverse nation, keen to do more business with Mexican partners. And a series of bilateral education agreements signed during the Dual Year will underpin this: the UK is already the primary destination for Mexicans doing postgraduate study abroad.