Geronimo Gutierrez Fernandez, a former bureaucrat and banker, will have his job cut out for him
MEXICO CITY—The head of the North American Development Bank, Geronimo Gutierrez Fernandez, will be Mexico’s new ambassador in Washington, the Mexican government said Friday.
Mexico’s Foreign Affairs Ministry announced the appointment in a statement that also said Mexico’s current ambassador in the United States, Carlos Manuel Sada Solana, will become undersecretary for North America. Sada will represent Mexico at the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump.
Gutierrez’s appointment requires ratification by the Mexican senate.
In his new job, Gutierrez will face Trump’s promise to build a border wall and deport thousands of immigrants.
Prior to his post at the bank, Gutierrez served as Mexico’s undersecretary for North America and undersecretary for Latin America and the Caribbean.
He has been the managing director of the bank in San Antonio, Texas, since 2010. It offers low-interest financing to projects aimed at improving environmental and living conditions in communities along the U.S.-Mexico border, such as water supply and waste treatment improvements, identified by its sister organization, the Ciudad Juarez, Mexico-based Border Environment Cooperation Commission.
The bank was created under the North American Free Trade Agreement and began operations in November 1994 with capitalization from both countries. Trump has said he wants to renegotiate the agreement known as NAFTA.
Eligible projects must be located within about 62 miles north of the Arizona, California, New Mexico or Texas boundaries with Mexico, according to the NADBank website. Eligible projects for Mexico must be within 186 miles south of the U.S. border in the states of Baja California, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, Sonora and Tamaulipas.