Mexico to require visas for Peru nationals amid increase in migration News
EneasMx, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedida Commons
Mexico to require visas for Peru nationals amid increase in migration

The Mexican government published an agreement that will require Peruvian nationals wishing to enter Mexico as a visitor without permission to engage in paid activities to obtain a visa from the Mexican consular authority. The measure, announced on Thursday, will come into effect starting from April 20, 2024, and will not apply to Peruvians holding a valid visa or permanent resident card from any country within the Schengen area.

Since 2012, Mexico has waived the visa requirement for Peruvian nationals with visitor status without authorization to engage in paid activities within Mexico. However, as stated in the agreement published on Thursday, Mexico’s recent decision to revoke this privilege is allegedly in response to a significant increase in the number of Peruvian nationals entering Mexican territory to engage in activities not authorized under their visitor status. The Mexican government observed that part of this situation is reflected in the immigration filters, where they claim to have identified Peruvian individuals with visitor status who do not fit the profile of genuine visitors or tourists and who present inconsistencies in their documentation or information.

However, the agreement stated that the measure is temporary and will remain in effect until safe, orderly and regular migratory flows can be guaranteed. In this regard, the Mexican government has indicated that it will work with the Peruvian government to achieve this, as stated in Article 3 of the Agreement:

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall carry out joint actions with the Government of the Republic of Peru, in accordance with current regulations, in order to ensure safe, orderly, and regular migratory flows that will eventually allow the elimination of the visa requirement for nationals of said country.

Nevertheless, the Peruvian Foreign Ministry issued a press release on Saturday deploring Mexico’s decision, saying that it undermines efforts to improve bilateral relations and affects commitments made in the Pacific Alliance to facilitate the free movement of people between the two countries. In addition, the Peruvian government announced that it would also impose a visa requirement on Mexican citizens wishing to visit Peruvian territory:

In response to the unilateral announcement by the Government of Mexico to impose a temporary visa requirement on Peruvian citizens wishing to visit their country, and in application of the principle of reciprocity, a fundamental rule in relations between sovereign states, the Government of Peru will impose a visa requirement on Mexican citizens wishing to visit our country. […] Like Mexico, Peru will make some exceptions, which will be specified in a forthcoming Supreme Decree. In this regard, Mexican citizens who have Schengen visas, British visas, Canadian visas, US visas, Australian visas, and Japanese visas, as well as those who are permanent residents of the countries concerned and members of the Pacific Alliance, will not require a visa (translated from Spanish).

It is worth noting that before the aforementioned agreement, there were already diplomatic tensions between Mexico and Peru. In December 2022, the Peruvian government expelled the Mexican ambassador in Lima Pablo Monroy due to statements made by representatives of the Mexican government in support of former Peruvian President Pedro Castillo, who was accused of attempting a failed coup. Despite this, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has continued to reiterate his support for Castillo, calling for his release and criticizing Peruvian President Dina Boluarte, calling her a “false president.” Then, in September 2023, López Obrador said that he would not attend the 2024 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Summit—which Peru will host—citing that Mexico “has no relations with Peru.”