Mexican development bank Bancomext is to offer credit lines and loan guarantees of up to US$425m to auto-parts exporters suffering a drop in demand in a bid to prop up the industry as purchases of new cars and light trucks plummet worldwide.

Mexico has 1,550 car parts manufacturers, which provide employment for 450,000 people according to Bancomext. It says it will offer credit lines worth US$200m and loan guarantees worth a further US$225m.

Mexico is also in 'very advanced' discussions to make financing available to local units of US automakers if they need help to keep their Mexican plants operating, the Economy Ministry said last month.