MEXICO CITY--Mexico is reviewing its tourism PR business, as it readies expanded budgets to lure back tourists deterred by negative perceptions of the country.

The Mexico Tourism Board has conducted a formal review of its PR account, which has been handled on an interim basis by Ogilvy PR since late last year. The Holmes Report understands that Burson-Marsteller previously held the mandate for 18 months.

The review comes as Mexico Tourism Board CMO Gerardo Llanes announced plans to double PR spending to $21 million, according to a report in AdAge.

Llanes has been working with Ogilvy PR to try and shift the perception that the country is riddled with drug-fuelled violence. The country’s swine flu outbreak in 2009 has also played a role in affecting tourism numbers, a critical component of Mexico’s economy.

A spokesman at Visit Mexico in London confirmed the review was underway, and that a decision is imminent. It is understood that several agencies have pitched for the business.