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NOVEMBER 2004 EDITION ARCHIVE
Legal Updates300 protestors, some wearing traditional Aztec headdresses, protested the construction of a Wal-Mart store in a village near the famous ruins of Teotihuacán. The protests are not limited to local villagers; prominent Mexican writers and painters sent President Vicente Fox a letter asking him to intervene and stop the store’s construction. While the writers and painters do not object to the store being built, they do object to the proximity of the new store to the ancient ruins.
Business & Politics OutlookThe new law that gives PEMEX more financial and tax freedom has encountered resistance among certain PRI and PRD senators. PRI Senator Manuel Bartlett said that the proposed bill approved by the House of Deputies must be reviewed and modified to avoid “opening the doors to privatization of PEMEX.”
- Inaugurating the National Innovation and Quality in Public Administration Week, President Fox called upon the three levels of government to exercise their respective powers ethically, efficiently and with transparency. Fox told the audience that Mexican society expects local, state and national governments to provide concrete results in their daily lives in order to strengthen democracy.
- The Mexican Senate, in a vote of 81-23, reappointed Jose Luis Soberanes Fernandez to another five year term as head of Mexico’s Human Rights Commission. The reappointment was opposed by some of the country’s most prominent non-governmental human rights organizations, which claimed that Soberanes had failed to consult with them enough and had not been aggressive enough in protecting human rights.
- During the 21st meeting of the Mexico-United States Bi-National Commission, the Mexican Secretary for the Environment and Natural Resources and the U.S. Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency signed two agreements related to the environment. The first agreement, a letter of intent, is aimed at developing cooperative measures for protection of the environment. The second agreement deals with the development and collaboration of environmental strategies for the handling of... [Read More]
- During the Bi-National Commission meeting, the Mexican Secretary of the Interior, Santiago Creel, and the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security, Thomas Ridge, stated that cooperation between the two countries in security matters has yielded results in the fight against organized crime. The two governments agreed to strengthen and improve security between the two countries by means of exchanges of intelligence information related to antiterrorism.
- Secretary of State Colin Powell and five other members of the Bush cabinet flew to Mexico to meet with President Vicente Fox. According to Powell, prospects are improving for congressional action to grant legal status to undocumented aliens. The Bush proposal, unveiled in January of 2004, would provide temporary legal status to many of the more than eight million immigrants who live illegally in the United States.
- A Free Trade Zone will begin to operate in the Mexican town of San Luis Potosi according to Juan Carlos Lopez, the Director General for Logistik Free Trade Zone. Companies located within the zone will not incur taxes on raw materials and products used in their business for a period of up to two years. The Free Trade Zone will occupy 530 Hectares (approximately 1,250 acres). San Luis Potosi was selected as the site due to its central location in Mexico. According to Lopez,... [Read More]
- Two months before the U.S. opens its doors to Chinese textile imports, 52 countries, including Mexico, were able to convince the WTO to accept their establishment of safeguards to protect their exports into the U.S. The impact to Mexico by the Chinese entry into the U.S. market for 2005 is reduced from 100% to 30% according to Rosendo Vallés, President of the National Industrial Textile Chamber of Commerce.
- Seeking diversification in the Mexican export market and supporting small and medium business, Mexico, France and the Canadian Province of Quebec seek to create commercial and strategic alliances. “We seek to create a worldwide network for small and medium size business to participate in commercial encounters and join together to work, seek new partners and create strategic alliances” according to the French Ambassador to Mexico, Richard Duqué.
Economic IndicatorsOn November 11, 2004, the exchange rate published in the Official Journal of the Federation was 11.4299 pesos to 1 United States Dollar. Ex