CHETUMAL, Mexico, Wed. Aug. 22, 2018– Belizean buses and vehicles carrying goods into Mexico must now acquire Mexican insurance to travel to Chetumal, or to drive on Mexican highways and roads. The requisite insurance is about $1,000 USD per year, which can be bought at the Corozal northern border. Enforcement of the requirement began last week.
Joel Chan, 32, a bus driver of Valencia’s Bus Service from Orange Walk, told us today that an agreement had been made between Belize, Mexico and Guatemala that granted permission to Belizeans to drive to bordering towns in Mexico (and Guatemala) without insurance. He said this arrangement had been in place for years; however, the law has been changed and the Mexicans are now requiring that buses and vehicles carrying goods must be insured to travel on their roads. He said that vehicles which have the Mexican insurance will not encounter any problems.
Chan says that bus operators and owners of commercial vehicles were warned by Mexican officials a long time ago that the privilege extended to Belizeans would soon come to an end, and enforcement of the new laws would begin.
In June, we reported that from Wednesday, June 13, to Friday, June 15, 2018, “all vehicles from Belize carrying passengers and goods that cross over the Mexican border on to Subteniente Lopez on Route 186 in Chetumal”, were to be inspected by Mexican officials.
The exercise was carried out by Mexico’s Secretariat of Communications and Transportation to promote and encourage Belizean vehicle owners, especially owners of commercial vehicles, to register and insure their vehicles entering Mexico.
Mexican authorities urge Belizean drivers to have their vehicle’s registration and insurance documents, driver’s permit, and a proper license for the vehicle they are driving.
Vehicles using federal roads in Mexico must comply with federal requirements as per Mexican law, which is in line with standard international procedure and in accordance with a Memorandum of Understanding on International Motor Carrier, Passenger and Freight Transportation signed between the governments of Belize and Mexico on October 25, 2017.
There were no fines or sanctions imposed during the inspection period on Belizean drivers and vehicles, which was the warning period.
After Friday, June 15, all Belizean vehicles and drivers engaged in international cargo and passenger services in Mexico have been required to have the corresponding registration, license, and current insurance. Vehicles that are involved in commerce in Mexico must be insured to traverse on Mexican roads and highways. These requirements are for commercial vehicles entering Mexico, such as buses, passenger vans, and freight transportation.
Belize’s Ministry of Transport informed the public that similar requirements apply to Mexican commercial vehicles entering Belize, in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries. The Ministry encourages Belizean vehicle owners to comply with these requirements.
In speaking about Mexico’s requirements for Belizean vehicle owners, the Minister of Transport, Hon. Edmond “Clear the Land” Castro, said that the Mexicans have been gracious to us and that they have allowed Belizeans to travel on their roads and highways without insurance and registration, which is not tolerated in Belize. He said that all vehicles must be licensed and insured to travel legally on our roads in Belize. Now, the Mexicans are making the same request, that vehicles traveling on their highways are registered and insured.