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With a significant amount of auto industry production going to Mexico — and more vehicles coming into the U.S. from Mexico — estimates are that by 2020, the volume may exceed 5 million vehicles a year.

“This puts a tremendous stress on industry resources related to rail, truck, and ocean transport,” says Lang Ware, AIAG’s director, supply chain products and services. “AIAG members will face a challenge for shipping and other resources as there will be a tremendous strain on the Mexico logistics infrastructure.

To address the Mexico challenge, AIAG is hosting a one-day conference called Mexico FVL Capacity 2020 on September 7, 2016 in Troy, Michigan. The conference will not offer traditional presentations, but rather, it will be designed to engage attendees and experts in problem-solving for the good of the industry.

“This is an inaugural event for finished vehicle logistics and for AIAG,” says Ware. “The purpose is to bring the industry together to focus on a single important issue.”

The conference will focus on how industry leaders are planning to address the impending shortfall of capacity to handle the quickly rising Mexico production. Topics covered in event sessions will include:

  • A global and regional market update, including key issues impacting the industry (oil prices, emission regulations, China’s economic impact, etc.)
  • Mexico Industry Capacity Analysis
  • FVL Modal Capacity Panel Discussion
  • OEM Panel Discussion

A special session will offer a deep dive on the North American market from a sales, assembly, and import/export perspective, including discussion on when the next economic downturn is expected along with its impact on the industry.

Support for this event comes from AIAG’s FVL Oversight Committee — a group of 11 select individuals from among OEMs, rail, ocean, trucking, service providers, and advisors — who represent the voice of the industry and guide AIAG to industry pain points. Addressing logistics capacity challenges in Mexico is Job One for the industry right now, says the committee.

The goal is to bring the best and the brightest into one room to figure out the industry’s options, says Bill Kerrigan, vice president of logistics for SSA Marine’s Automotive Division, headquartered in Mexico City. “It’s really going to be about cooperation. We need to know what logistics chains exist where we can help each other.”

Carla Kalogeridis is AIAG’s e-news editor.