Headlines from Mexico

newspapers logo2-011.The Bank of Mexico raised interest rates by half a percentage point to 5.25% this Thursday in response to the volatility of the peso, which reached an all time low loosing 10% of its value since the results of the U.S. election . In its statement the Bank of Mexico, affirmed that a period of uncertainty is coming and that concerns about trade and foreign investment are driving this hike in interest rates.

Read more: El Financiero, El Universal, Expansión, Animal Político, Proceso

2. After the results of the U.S. election, concerns about the President-elect’s controversial policies have dominated the conversation in Mexico, mainly revolving around migration and trade. With regards to trade, and particularly NAFTA, businesses and companies of both the U.S. and Mexico have created a coalition of over 5000 companies, to make the case for the importance of NAFTA  and trade between the U.S. and Mexico. Experts in international trade have cautioned Mexico to avoid taking a defensive stance on this issue and urged the government define its position for renegotiation of NAFTA as soon as possible. With regards to migration, the Trump’s announcement of initially deporting up to 3 million people during his Presidency,  the Mexican Ministry of Interior responded that legally, the United States can only deport 60,000 immigrants per year and affirmed that the country is prepared to respond to the migratory policies that the administration of Trump would want to impose. Furthermore, the Ministry of Foreign Relations of Mexico issued an alert for migrants in the U.S. and has established an 11 point action plan to protect the Mexican community in the U.S. and to respond to any incidents of violence or discrimination through its network of consulates.

Read more: El Economista, El Financiero, Milenio, El Universal

3. The National Electoral Institute of Mexico announced on Wednesday that political parties have been evading taxes and owe different institutions, including the Mexican Social Security Institute,  up to 626 million pesos. The left-wing party PRD is the political party with the most debt amounting to 53% of the total debt that the parties owe. Electoral Councilor Ciro Murayama, affirmed that this is a common practice during electoral periods which reflect the fragility and corruption of the State and affirmed that this is a matter that needs to be solved urgently, giving the parties until December 31st, 2016 to pay their debts. The response of the parties have predominantly focused on clarifying the nature of the debt and separated the national from the individual states debt.

Read more: Expansión, El Universal, Reforma, Milenio

4. On November 10, former governor of Sonora, turned himself in 42 days after an apprehension order was issued against him. He is currently being held in Mexico City and is facing seven charges with regards to money laundering, fiscal fraud and organized crime. His son is also facing organized crime charges. The former governor will be facing between 38 to up to 94 years in prison. Given the severity of the charges, Padres will have to face the process in jail and will not be allowed to post bail.

Read more: Excelsior,  El Financiero,  La Jornada, Aristegui Noticias

Headlines from Mexico

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1. On Saturday, October 29, Mexico City hosted its first ever Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) parade. The celebration dates back to Aztec and pre-Columbian times. It’s a celebration of life and teaches people not to be afraid of death. The festival’s also an opportunity to honor the dead.  The idea for the parade was born out of the imagination of a scriptwriter for the James Bond movie Spectre ; more than 250,000 people attended the parade.

Read more: El Universal, Excelsior, La Jornada, Animal Político

2. The Secretary of Foreign Affairs Claudia Ruiz Massieu asserted, this Thursday at the Mexican Senate, that she was aware of the decision to invite the Republican candidate Donald Trump to meet President Enrique Peña Nieto in Los Pinos. Ruiz Massieu responded that she believed that the dialogue with the Republican candidate was necessary given his derogatory comments and limited knowledge of Mexico. The majority of the Senate vocally criticized this decision and question Ruiz Massieu’s role that was previously unclear. The Senators also asked the Secretary what was the strategy if Trump won the elections on Tuesday to which she replied that the Mexican government will engage with the President elect the night of election no matter the result.

Read more: Expansión, Proceso, El Universal, Milenio, Aristegui Noticias

3. The volatility of the peso in response to the U.S. elections has cause dthe peso to fall to an all-time price of $19.50 this Tuesday as Trump’s poll numbers increased. This a 1.8% from the price at which it had closed the day before. The Mexican Stock Exchange also suffered a shock with a fall of 1.47%. On Thursday, Carstens, the Central Bank Governor, announced that the Bank of Mexico has already come up with a contingency plan that has been discussed with Meade, the Secretary of Finance and Public Credit, in the event that Donald Trump given that the peso could fall by almost 10% in a matter of weeks if he wins.

Read more: Excelsior, El Universal, El Financiero, Expansión, La Jornada

4. This week, the leader of the National Action Party, Ricardo Anaya came under strong criticism about his personal finances. It was published that Anaya’s family lives in Atlanta, Georgia and that yearly expenses to cover the standard of living of his family and the constant travelling the party leader takes to visit them, amounts to up to 4.5 million pesos.  Anaya responded to criticism affirming that his family is his priority and that having them in the U.S. is a temporary investing that prioritizes the future of his children. He also announced that all these expenses had been publicly declared through the 3 de 3 declaration and denied that any of these expenses come from party funds or that his role as party leader is compromised by the constant travelling.  Party leaders  have still been critical, the president of the PRI, claims that the rent that Anaya receives from the property he owns is not in his declaration and Alejandra Barrales, President of PRD, reiterated that Anaya needs to justify where the funds come from.

Read more: Milenio, El Universal, Excelsior, Animal Político 

Headlines from Mexico

newspapers logo2-011.This week President Peña Nieto announced cabinet changes for the Office of the Attorney General and the Public Administration Ministry. The incumbent head of the Attorney General’s Office, Arely Gomez, will now head the Public Administration Ministry while Raul Cervantes, who had previously been considered for Supreme Court Justice, will now lead the Attorney General’s office. Gomez gave a passionate speech at her swearing in ceremony after the Senate’s ratification were she vowed to be impartial and do her best to restore the public’s confidence in the government’s main anti-corruption institution. At the Attorney General’s office Cervantes, will be managing several high-profile cases that have dominated the office’s agenda since 2014, including the Ayotzinapa case, the extradition of El Chapo, and the open investigations against two former governors, Padres and Duarte.

Read more: El Universal, Expansión, Excelsior, La Jornada, Milenio

2. For the first time in 18 months the  inflation rate has surpassed the Bank of Mexico 3% target. The inflation rate for the first half of October  rose to 3.09% and is primarily due to the depreciation of the peso and a rise in energy, gas, and electricity prices. Experts argue that the risk of increasing inflation due to the depreciation of the dollar is ameliorating and Citibanamex predicts that the annual general inflation for 2016 will reach 3.2%.

Read more: El Economista,  Aristegui Noticias, Excelsior, El Universal 

3.The international ratings agency, Fitch Ratings, announced this week that the fiscal burden that the federal government is placing on Pemex could lead to insolvency of the state-owned company. The agency explained that the tax burden that the Finance Ministry is putting on Pemex could only be sustained by a massive increase in debt for the company. Currently, Pemex pays 100% of its taxes with debt and the problem could become even more acute. Furthermore, the solvency of Pemex is also affected by the reduction of spending on investment which weakens the capacity for innovation and progress for the company. Fitch Ratings recognizes that the financial support that the government is providing is a step in the right direction but affirms that this will not be enough to make the company’s financial activities sustainable.

Read more: El Economista, La Jornada, El Financiero, Expansión, El Universal

4. This week, 18 members of the right-wing National Action Party (PAN), published a public letter to the party leader, Ricardo Anaya, expressing their discontent with his leadership in particular with respects to the upcoming 2018 electoral process. The letter accuses Anaya of using his leadership position to get a head start for his own Presidential candidacy and prioritizing his personal project over the party’s interests. They demand Anaya to state whether he is going to seek the Presidential candidacy for the party in 2018 and if so that he should resign as head of the party to avoid conflicts of interest. In response, PAN’s National Executive Committee  has created a commission to promote dialogue and unity within the party and to discuss the diversity of opinions regarding who should be party’s Presidential candidate. The party’s internal dispute escalated as the political deputy coordinator of the party’s parliamentary group, Eukid Castañon, resigned given disagreements with the parliamentary coordinator. Some analysts believe that the public showcasing of the internal dispute could be detrimental to the party’s image and their 2018 outcomes.

Read more: Expansión, Milenio, Excelsior, El Universal 

 

 

Headlines from Mexico

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1.This Thursday, the Attorney General of Mexico, Arely Gómez González, has officially announced that she has obtained the apprehension order against former Governor of Veracruz, Javier Duarte for illicit enrichment and money laundering. The legal ground to apprehend is unclear givne the legal protections governors in Mexico have. After his resignation last week, Duarte has not been publicly seen and is believed to have left the country. The office of the Attorney General in Mexico has notified INTERPOL which makes Duarte a fugitive in 190 countries.

Read more: Excélsior, La Jornada , Milenio, El Financiero

2.The Secretary of National Defense, Division General Salvador Cienfuegos Zepeda responded to a question that the Armed Forces in Mexico are suffering from burnout from the massive amounts of tasks that they have needed to handle in the last years including organized crime and other national security tasks that have extended throughout the entire Mexican territory. The Secretary affirmed that there needs to be a stronger legal framework and increase in the number of troops to be able to strengthen the Armed Forces. Cienfuegos also said that despite the challenges, the 230,000-strong force, has a strong moral and sense of duty. The Secretary was attending the  inauguration of the National Defense and Humanitarian International Law at Universidad Anahuac on Wednesday.

Read more: La Jornada, El Universal , Excelsior , Milenio

3. The Mexican congress has approved 2017  Revenue Act. In the law, congress approved a 42 cent increase in the exchange rate with the dollar (leaving it at 18.62), increased the expectations of oil production from 1.928 billion barrels a day to 1.947, and adjusted the expectations of tax revenue. This has led to an artificial increase of the 2017 government budget of 51.3 billion extra pesos. Experts said that these artificial changes were made without any technical advise and that they will present weak results if any at all.

Read more: Reforma, El Economista, La Jornada, Milenio, El Financiero,

4. The Federal Commission of Economic Competition (COFECE) has opened an investigation on a potential pharmaceutical  monopoly . The commission is going to investigate all aspects of the pharmaceutical industry including production, distribution, and commercialization. This is the first time that an entire economic sector is investigated in Mexico. The COFECE has already identified that in the past 5-6 years drug prices have increased by 10%, an inflation above the aggregate economy average.

Read more: El Economista, El Universal, El Financiero, Milenio

Headlines from Mexico

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1.The request for leave of absence of Veracruz governor, Javier Duarte, 48 days before his official end of term, this past Wednesday October 14, caused mixed reactions from Mexico’s political leaders and public opinion. Javier Duarte, accused of alleged funds mismanagement and  unjust enrichment, said on his announcement Wednesday that his state needs a full-time governor and that he now needs to focus on defending his case against the allegations presented. His party, the PRI, applauded Duarte while officials and congressmen from opposing parties, PAN and PRD,  voiced their concerns emphasizing that the full force of the law should still be applied and that his leave of absence should give not way to impunity on his case. More generally, the main headlines point to public’s exhaustion on this case, claim that the resignation comes too late, and highlight that Veracruz still has a long way ahead of recovery and stability for the state.

Read more: Milenio, Excelsior, Reforma, Proceso, El Universal

2. The proposal the private sector presented by the Consejo Coordinador Empresarial (CCE), to form an alliance against insecurity, fails in the Senate as congressmen from PRI, PRD, PVEM, and PT argue that there is already a cohesive system for cooperation in security and that participation of the private sector is already taken into consideration in this framework. Senators from PAN party supported the initiative but other party congressmen were wary of potential electoral interests involved in the support. The private sector argued that crime is especially prevalent against businesses across the country and a renewed effort needs to emphasize policy against this type of crimes.

Read more: Excelsior, El Economista,  Expansión,  Milenio 

3. On its last meeting, the Bank of Mexico shifted its focus on the concerns for the Mexican economy and the peso stability from external factors to internal factors pointing especially at the weak performance of the fiscal accounts, continued increase in the deficit of the current account, and the lack of transparency in Pemex’s planification. The Bank of Mexico is now identifying these developments as some of the principal causes for lack of investment in the country  while still aware of the external factors. This is an important shift from the previous focus which had mainly pointed at the U.S. elections and the fluctuations in oil prices.

Read more: El Financiero, El Universal, Milenio

4. Secretary of Interior Miguel Osorio Chong announced on Friday that running for Presidential office in 2018 “is not in his agenda”. The Secretary claimed that his main responsibility is to his country in the current position he holds. Osorio Chong had been under scrutiny because of videos he published in social media that appeared to be a pre-launch to a Presidential candidacy.

Read more: Reforma, El Universal, La Jornada, El Financiero

Headlines from Mexico

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1.This Thursday the Bank of Mexico, led by Agustín Carstens, raised the interest rate to 4.75%, a half percentage point rise, to contain inflation and strengthen the peso. Friday morning; however, the peso appeared largely unresponsive to the policy and its volatility is expected to rise. This is the third interest rate hike of the year by Bank of Mexico and it comes after a week of high peso volatility in response to the U.S. Presidential debate and the movement in oil prices after OPEC’s oil supply announcement.

Read more: Excelsior, El Financiero, Expansión MXMilenio

2.Mexico’s Deputy Attorney General’s Office for Federal Crimes Investigation has issued an apprehension order for Guillermo Padrés former governor of Sonora for corruption charges including over 300 suspicious activities of misallocation of funds, money laundering and unjust enrichment. Padrés had met earlier this week with the National Action Party Anticorruption Commission as part of the corruption charges investigation.

Read more: La Jornada, El Universal, Reforma, Proceso

3. This Monday, in the development of the corruption accusations against the governor of Veracruz, Javier Duarte,  the PRI suspended the governor’s party rights and that of six other government officials from Veracruz. Duarte has been blamed for the bankruptcy of his state, and is charged with unjust enrichment and fund mismanagement. This is the first time that the party rights of an incumbent governor have been revoked and is the beginning of a process that could lead to the definite removal of Duarte from the PRI party.

Read more: Reforma, Excelsior, El FinancieroAnimal Político

4. In the new Global  Competitiveness Report, published by the World Economic Forum this  Wednesday, Mexico is now ranked on the 51st position  of the Competitiveness Index, six positions ahead of last year’s ranking. Mexico is now Latin America’s third most competitive economy after Chile and Panamá; the ranking is the most competitive position Mexico has been at in a decade. The improvement has been attributed to higher efficiency in the goods market, increased flexibility in the labor market, and the steady development of the financial market.

Read more: El Financiero, El Economista, Expansión, El Universal

 

Headlines from Mexico

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1. A combination of international (U.S. elections and oil prices mainly) and domestic issues have pushed the Mexican peso this week to its weakest ever level against the U.S. dollar. The currency is down nearly 13% this year against the dollar, making it one of the world’s worst performers. It has fallen 33% in the past two years.

Read more: El UniversalForbes México, Milenio, Expansión MX

2. Accusations of corruption that have marked Veracruz Governor Javier Duarte and his administration are becoming more numerous, as are the investigations against him and alleged collaborators.

Read more: El Financiero, Excelsior, El Universal, Reforma

3. During President Enrique Peña Nieto’s administration, 14 priests have been murdered and one was recently kidnapped, allegedly by organized criminal groups. Since 1990 to date, there have been 45 homicides, making of Mexico -quoting different organizations- a dangerous country to be a priest.

Read more: Milenio, Excelsior, Animal Político,

4. Mexico’s Environment Secretary, Rafael Pacchiano, delivered the country’s ratification of the Paris Agreement to the United Nations. To date, 60 countries  -who account for 47.76% of emissions worldwide- have ratified the treaty to combat global climate change with domestic action.

Read more: La Jornada, Excelsior, El Universal , El Economista