Posts Tagged ‘Enrique Pena Nieto’

Is Mexico Doing Enough to Secure Its Southern Border?

| July 18th, 2014 | No Comments »


Sneaking north into Mexico wasn’t easy, according to Brandon, who was 14 years old when he left his hometown in Guatemala last April to rejoin his parents in the United States.

A smuggler hired to get Brandon across the border led him on a five-hour hike across rough terrain and through sweltering heat to avoid Mexican border checkpoints.

“I suffered a lot,” Brandon told Fusion during a recent interview in Virginia. “It was really hot. There were a lot of thorns and my shoes broke. I got blisters on my feet.”

The month-long trip didn’t get any easier after that. The coyote warned Brandon’s group that capture by the Mexican federal police meant deportation or bribery. “He said that if they found us, they would arrest everyone.”

Still, Mexican immigration enforcement was no comparison to what he faced when he entered the U.S. After crossing the Rio Grande border into South Texas, Brandon was ... Read More

Mexico makes promises, but little changes at Guatemala border

| July 17th, 2014 | No Comments »
Dallas News

CIUDAD HIDALGO, Mexico — Mexico is promising to stem the flow of Central American migrants to the U.S. by tightening control at its notoriously porous Guatemalan border.

But messages from the country’s top two leaders in little more than a week have provided few details on how. And the scene on the ground is business as usual.

Dozens of Central Americans who paid $1.50 a head could be seen this week crossing the broad Suchiate River on improvised rafts of inner tubes and wooden boards, in full view of Mexican police on the shore and immigration agents posted on a bridge overhead.

“I don’t see anything has changed,” Guatemalan Luisa Fuentes, 56, said as she rode a raft to Mexico.

La Bestia, a decrepit freight train that takes migrants north from the border state of Chiapas, still carried many riders on its roof.

President Enrique Peña Nieto’s government says it is catching and deporting far ... Read More

18 meses del sexenio de Peña: 16,174 ejecuciones

| July 17th, 2014 | No Comments »

Podemos decir que quizás alrededor de 60% de los homicidios en México tienen que ver con el crimen organizado.

Por Leo Zuckermann

En mayo de este año aumentaron en 18% las ejecuciones relacionadas con el crimen organizado, comparadas con las del mes inmediato anterior: de 658 en abril, pasamos a 777. Esto, de acuerdo con la base de datos de Lantia, consultora especializada en temas de seguridad. Contabilizando el total de este tipo de homicidios en los primeros 18 meses del sexenio del presidente Peña Nieto, tenemos un total de 16 mil 174, un promedio de 30 por día.

En las cifras de Lantia hay una mala noticia: se revirtió la tendencia de tres meses a la baja en las ejecuciones que había comenzado en febrero de este año. De hecho, en mayo regresamos a casi 800 ejecuciones en el mes, cifra muy similar a la que se dio en febrero. La segunda quincena ... Read More

Cómo Se Dice, “Lost in Translation”?

| July 16th, 2014 | No Comments »
Foreign Policy

On immigration, drugs, and virtually every other pressing policy issue, why can’t the United States and Mexico stop talking past each other?


By now, the number is well known: From October 2013 to June 15 of this year, 52,000 unaccompanied children and teenagers were caught at the American border with Mexico, twice the number for the same period in the previous year. Responding to the influx of young migrants and the public outcry they’ve provoked, President Barack Obama has asked Congress to provide nearly $4 billion to establish new detention facilities, increase aerial surveillance capacity, and hire more immigration judges to speed up the processing of the detained. The proposal has been met with skepticism, not only from Obama’s political opponents, but also from immigration activists who argue that it is yet another example of the U.S. effort to stem the flow of migrants withoutaddressing systemic problems in Central America — gang violence, weak rule ... Read More

Foreigners enthuse over Enrique Peña Nieto’s reforms. Mexicans are warier

| July 3rd, 2014 | No Comments »
The Economist

TWENTY years ago Juan Morales shut his beautifully preserved 19th-century mill in Morelos, a village in Coahuila close to the Texan border, after reductions to subsidies made the flour business unprofitable. Now he hopes the mill will get a new lease of life, thanks to a historic energy reform by President Enrique Peña Nieto (pictured). Instead of producing flour, Mr Morales plans to generate electricity, using water from his millstream and a newly acquired power turbine. For the first time he will be able to sell it to the local grid.

Until now, almost all electricity in the country has been generated by the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE), a state monopoly whose smoke-belching plants in Nava, ten miles (16km) away, guzzle so much coal that there are huge tailbacks of the sooty lorries that deliver it. Like Mr Morales, the CFE has its eyes on a brighter future. According to its ... Read More

Mexico’s Pena Nieto Vows to Help Stop Child Migrant Trafficking

| July 1st, 2014 | No Comments »

By Brendan Case and Eric Martin

Mexico President Enrique Pena Nieto pledged to help put an end to a surge in child migration from Central America to the U.S., attributing the jump to organized crime gangs that smuggle people across the border.

“We’re discouraging this migration of children,” Pena Nieto said in an interview with Charlie Rose taped June 27 and scheduled to air on PBS last night. “I think most of the times, they’re being victims. This is a consequence of the abuse of criminal gangs that are devoted to trafficking with children, or to take migrants to the United States.”

U.S. President Barack Obama yesterday asked Congress for emergency funds and legal authority to stem the rising flow of children into the U.S. and said legislation may be needed to increase penalties for people smuggling them.

More than 52,000 unaccompanied children have arrived at the U.S.-Mexico border this fiscal year through June 15, about double the number ... Read More

Why isn’t Mexico’s security strategy working?

| June 12th, 2014 | No Comments »


Key Points:

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto must recognize that security is not a distraction from his economic agenda and that confronting criminal enterprises is indispensable to the nation’s stability and prosperity. Peña Nieto has not implemented an effective security strategy, and his response to drug violence is uncalibrated and improvised. Mexico should respond more effectively to innovative, globalized cartels and be more receptive to US collaboration so that it can counter criminality fueled by US demand for illicit drugs.

President Enrique Peña Nieto came to power in Mexico 18 months ago promising to reform Mexico’s economy to make it more competitive and prosperous. He also stressed the need to change the controversial antidrug strategy pursued by his predecessor, Felipe Calderón.

Although Peña Nieto has made considerable progress on an ambitious economic agenda thus far, he has been slow to articulate, let alone implement, an alternative strategy for dealing ... Read More

Legitimate business unlocks Mexico’s growth

| June 4th, 2014 | No Comments »
Financial Times

By Martin Wolf

If Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, seeks an example of a democratically elected leader embarked on radical reform, he could look to Enrique Peña Nieto. True, the latter is president of a far- smaller country, and a richer one – Mexico’s average standard of living is double India’s, although poor economic performance in recent decades has narrowed the gap substantially. The two countries’ leaders confront related challenges. Both need to generate market-oriented growth in economies that show a huge gulf between a high-productivity formal sector and a low-productivity informal one. Mr Peña Nieto has embarked on bold reforms. Is his the model to be followed?

In a recent study, the McKinsey Global Institute captures Mexico’s dualism nicely. “There is a modern Mexico, a high-speed, sophisticated economy”, it acknowledges. But there is also a “traditional Mexico, a land of sub-scale, low-speed technologically backward, unproductive enterprises, many of which operate outside the formal economy”. ... Read More

Jam mañana

| May 22nd, 2014 | No Comments »
The Economist

SO FAR this year Mexico’s government has resembled one of the country’s many devotees of St Jude, patron saint of lost causes. It has doggedly stuck to a 3.9% 2014 growth forecast, even though its main export market, the United States, has been sluggish, and the twin pillars of its domestic economy—buying and building—have fared even worse.

On May 21st the central bank revised its growth prediction down to 2.3-3.3%, from 3-4% previously. The government was expected finally to follow suit on May 23rd, when first-quarter GDP figures were due to be released. Even so, officials are convinced that within months the benefits of its plans to modernise the economy will start to show up in the numbers.

Mexicans have good reason to be sceptical. In President Enrique Peña Nieto’s first year, when he launched an impressive volley of constitutional reforms, the economy grew by a meagre 1.1%. His government said it ... Read More

Background Briefing on Secretary Kerry’s Trip to Mexico

| May 22nd, 2014 | No Comments »
Department of State

Special Briefing

Senior State Department Official

En Route To Mexico City, Mexico May 21, 2014

SENIOR STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL: So the Secretary had had a couple of trips to Mexico planned previously either on his own or with the President or Vice President. He is, obviously, a member of what the Secretary kicked off last – sorry, the Vice President kicked off last September. This will get better as I drink the coffee.

QUESTION: Are we on the record, by the way?

MODERATOR: Background.


SENIOR STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL: This will get better. He was – he is a member of the High-Level Economic Dialogue with the Vice President kicked off last September and the President announced last May.

QUESTION: So this is not his first trip as Secretary?


QUESTION: As Secretary.

SENIOR STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL: He wasn’t able to go. Yes. He was not able to go on those. Basically, there were crises elsewhere.


SENIOR STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL: And so that’s why ... Read More

Reality check for Mexico

| May 22nd, 2014 | No Comments »
Financial Times

So Mexico, Aztec tiger, implementing far-sighted structural reforms that will ramp up economic growth, right?

Well yes, but prepare to be patient. The central bank, Banxico, has just delivered a reality check: growth this year will be in the 2.3 to 3.3 per cent range, not the 3 to 4 per cent previously forecast.

Last year, just as sentiment about Mexico was surging with a can-do new president preparing to boldly reform where no president had reformed before, the economy went into an unexpected tailspin – a combination of a new government not unleashing spending, and impact from the US.

Growth last year was a measly 1.1 per cent, the lowest rate since 2009. As a result, the government’s 3.9 per cent estimate – which Luis Videgaray, the finance minister, has said will only be revised after first-quarter GDP figures are published – has been looking increasingly optimistic.

Q1 data is due out on Friday, so mark your calendars ... Read More

Kerry Calls on Venezuela to Talk With Opposition

| May 22nd, 2014 | No Comments »
The New York Times


MEXICO CITY — Secretary of State John Kerry said on Wednesday that President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela had failed to negotiate in good faith with his political opponents and warned that the United States Congress was moving to legislate economic sanctions.

“Regrettably, there has just been a total failure by the government of Venezuela to demonstrate good-faith actions,” Mr. Kerry said during a visit here. “What is important is for the Venezuelan government now to honor the dialogue process and to restore the civil liberties of opposition leaders who have been unjustly imprisoned.”

Mr. Kerry, who is making his first trip to Mexico as secretary of state, met Wednesday with his Mexican counterpart, Jose Antonio Meade, and with Enrique Peña Nieto, the Mexican president.

Both sides sought to highlight promises to further economic and educational ties between Mexico ... Read More

Time for Latin America to focus on reform

| May 19th, 2014 | No Comments »
Financial Times

Latin America has been one of the great beneficiaries of the commodities supercycle of recent years. With the peak in that boom behind us, what is Latin America to do?

Structural reform, says Alejandro Werner, Western Hemisphere director at the IMF. As he told beyondbrics:

High growth in the last 10 years had a side effect – maybe [Latin America] didn’t push as fast as expected in structural reforms.

Mexico obviously has, ambitiously – and so far, successfully – been tackling an array of reforms including energy, telecoms, competition and education, in the first year and a half of the administration of Enrique Peña Nieto. Brazil, now, has some work to do.

Brazil has enacted some important reforms that fueled boom years, but its investment rate, at about 19 per cent of GDP, is very low by Latin American and emerging market standards, Werner says. In the advancing economies of Latin America, the level is more like ... Read More

Mexico sets security plan for violent Tamaulipas state

| May 14th, 2014 | No Comments »

The government in Mexico has pledged to deploy more security forces and boost intelligence in Tamaulipas, one of the country’s most dangerous states.

Mexican Interior Minister Miguel Angel Osorio admitted that the government had not done enough to deal with insecurity in the north-eastern state.

But he promised that a “new phase” against powerful drug cartels would restore peace there.

Last week, Mexican intelligence chief Salvador Haro Munoz was killed there.

His car was ambushed by armed men in the state capital, Ciudad Victoria.

’24-hour patrols’

Mr Osorio announced that the state would be divided into four regions, each with an army or navy officer in charge of implementing the government’s security plan.

“We will strengthen surveillance at ports, airports, customs and border crossings, as well as the major land routes,” he told a news conference.

Mr Osorio said security forces would “patrol 24 hours, every day of the week, in main urban areas”, and would conduct ... Read More

Mexico Oil Opening May Release Gusher for Foreigners

| May 13th, 2014 | No Comments »

By Adam Williams

When Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto arrived at the March 18 rally, he was greeted like a rock star. Hundreds of local residents and employees of Petroleos Mexicanos had gathered in the eastern state of Veracruz for the annual celebration of the 1938 expropriation of foreign oil wells and the founding of Pemex. The workers, all dressed in white shirts and guayaberas bearing the Pemex logo, leaned over waist-high barriers to try to touch the photogenic president. They cheered and sang, breaking frequently into a chant normally reserved for the national soccer team, Bloomberg Markets will report in its June issue.

An outsider would never have guessed that, just three months earlier, Pena Nieto, 47, had signed into law a constitutional amendment that Pemex, its powerful union and its political backers had fought against for decades. The amendment opens up Mexican oil and gas fields to foreign and private investment for the first ... Read More

Spotlight Of Mexican Drug War Focuses On State Along U.S.-Mexico Border

| May 1st, 2014 | No Comments »
From Fox News Latino

CIUDAD MIER, MEXICO (AP) –  Once again, the bodies are piling up in this violent U.S.-Mexican border state.

At least 14 people died Tuesday in several firefights between federal forces and gunmen in the city of Reynosa, across the border from McAllen, Texas. The dead included 10 alleged gunmen, two federal police officers and two bystanders, Tamaulipas state authorities said.

Gunmen blocked some of the industrial city’s main avenues with buses in the afternoon and then ambushed federal police officers on patrol, officials said.

Earlier this month in the border town of Ciudad Mier, gunmen peppered the facade of the main hotel, leaving at least 20 bullet holes in the two-story building. The next day, soldiers killed four of the alleged attackers. A day after that, three other gunmen were found dead near the Rio Grande.

A spasm of violence has left at least 64 dead throughout the northern state of Tamaulipas this month, ... Read More

Mexico Lays out Energy Reform Rules

| May 1st, 2014 | No Comments »
ABC News


The Mexican government on Wednesday unveiled its proposed rules for a historic opening of the state-owned oil and energy industry, saying contracts and production licenses should be put out for public bid and go to the company that offers the best return.

Energy Secretary Pedro Joaquin Coldwell said the service station monopoly of state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos would fade only gradually as the necessary distribution and other infrastructure is made ready. Private companies will not be allowed to immediately open gas stations to compete with it.

Joaquin Coldwell said that Mexican suppliers would be given preference in contracts over foreign firms in cases where both offer the same terms. And he said that Mexico would seek a goal of ensuring 25 percent “national content” goal in energy projects.

The rules must still be approved by Congress.

Mexico nationalized the oil industry in 1938, but in recent years Petroleos ... Read More

Mexico’s energy reforms to be delayed

| April 29th, 2014 | No Comments »
Financial Times

By John Paul Rathbone

Political infighting, poorly-drafted laws and an intense workload have delayed Mexico’s groundbreaking energy overhaul, potentially denting investor hopes about the country’s ambitious reform programme that so far has promised more than it has delivered.

President Enrique Peña Nieto last year pushed through constitutional changes required to break-up Mexico’s 76-year old energy monopoly, Pemex. But so-called secondary legislation, needed for the reform to take effect, is yet to pass through Congress. The same is true of other initiatives covering telecommunications and electoral reform.

“If approval is delayed by a couple of months, real foreign money investors . . . might overlook the delay,” said Benito Berber, Mexico analyst at Nomura. But if approval of the laws is “postponed until September, some real money investors may start to get impatient.”

Mr Peña Nieto had planned for the energy reform, which could unleash billions of dollars of private investment from oil majors such as ExxonMobil and Royal Dutch Shell, ... Read More

SecDef Chuck Hagel visits Mexico & Guatemala

| April 29th, 2014 | No Comments »
InterAmerican Security Watch



U.S. Secretary of Defense (SecDef) Chuck Hagel recently carried out a three-day visit to Mexico and Guatemala (April 23-26); this was his first visit to Latin America as SecDef since he assumed office. The objective of Hagel’s mini trip was to “affirm America’s commitment” to the region, as a Pentagon spokesman phrased it.

While no groundbreaking agreements were reached, Hagel’s visit comes at a time when U.S. allies in Latin America are feeling forgotten by Washington.

The trips

The first leg of Hagel’s tour was a trip to Mexico. The visit was fairly important as it highlights Washington’s approval of ongoing discussions regarding Mexico’s intention to buy U.S. weaponry. Specifically, the Mexican government is negotiating with Washington the purchase of 18 Black Hawk helicopters in a deal reportedly worth $680 million USD.

It is worth noting that Hagel’s visit to Mexico is the third trip by a senior U.S. official in recent months.President ... Read More

Mexico’s Anti-Market Antitrust Law

| April 28th, 2014 | No Comments »
Article originally appeared in the Wall Street Journal


Mexico’s Institutional Revolutionary Party President Enrique Peña Nieto has never claimed to be a policy wonk. He is an able politician with a vision of the future, and leaves the questions of how to get there to the skilled technocrats he hires.

Finance Minister Luis Videgaray, who has a Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, leads the Peña Nieto team of reformers. Such strong academic credentials ought to inspire confidence. But over 16 months Mr. Videgaray has gradually revealed a deep-seated mistrust of markets that threatens the faster growth his boss has promised.

The latest manifestation is a new antitrust law, initiated in the executive branch and expected to pass in Congress this week. It increases the discretionary power of regulators to penalize companies with a dominant market share even if there is no evidence of anticompetitive practices.

Since he took office in December 2012, Mr. Peña Nieto ... Read More

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