Communities are successfully managing hundreds of thousands of hectares of certified forests in Mexico often with state-of-the-art wood processing facilities and diversified production and environmental services. Distinguishing features of community-based forest enterprises (CFEs) in the country are the prevalence of community ownership, and the importance of the long-term viability of the businesses created in the service of local economic development processes. Many challenges still need to be resolved before it will be possible to secure effective management of the global atmospheric commons through market-based forest carbon trading. The ability to design national andsubnational REDD+ systems and REDD+ projects taking into account local property rights, socio-political dynamics and cultural perceptions of market-based instruments will be critical. This learning event harnesses important lessons learned through Mexico’s rich experience in promoting CFEs as input to the development of Mexico’s national REDD+ strategy, and challenges to be faced in designing and implementing REDD+ projects.