Private reforestation in Yucatan creates jobs; feds take notice and promise support

Federal official javier Garcia Bejos and Ruben Quezada of BIEECO plant a teak tree in Yucatan. PHOTO: Milenio.

TIZIMÍN, Yucatan — The federal government is ready to do more after the private sector created job opportunities in Tizimín.

A senior official in the Social Development Secretariat singled out the contribution by the firm Bienes Ecoforestales (Bieeco), which has turned a piece of dry land into Rancho San Miguel, a profitable plantation of teak trees, a hardwood with a high value, according to, citing a Milenio newspaper report.

Most of the ranch’s production is used in marine construction and in home and garden decor.

Federal official javier Garcia Bejos and Ruben Quezada of BIEECO plant a teak tree in Yucatan. PHOTO: Milenio.

Bieeco directly employs over 200 local families but the benefits of its operation extend to neighboring towns where few other economic activities existed before.

Not only has the firm created jobs, but it has financed housing projects and reforestation efforts.

Social Development Undersecretary Francisco Javier García Bejos said Bieeco’s influence in Tizimín was a good example of a private enterprise project, and one that should be complemented with social development actions by government.

García said authorities have detected several areas where a team effort is needed to fight poverty, but it’s hard to convince business owners to get involved.

He said it was time for authorities to “chip in” and go beyond the coordinating part, working actively to improve conditions for even more families.

Bieeco CEO Rubén Quezada described the firm as an agro-ecological socially responsible enterprisethat tries to make caring for the environment a business opportunity.

Among its activities throughout the country are the treatment of soil and water that have become mixed with hydrocarbons and other chemicals during the drilling for oil, thermal drying of sludge, the creation of forest plantations and the generation of clean energy.

Through the inauguration of Rancho San Miguel in 2011, over 1,000 hectares of eroded land have been recovered in the largest reforestation project in the state, which Bieeco said serves as a lung for the region, as a shield against wind erosion and the protection of local fauna.

Source:, Milenio (sp)