TAKE the lift down from Luis Videgaray’s office in the National Palace and you enter a portrait gallery of past finance ministers stretching back to the 19th century. Mr Videgaray runs through the latest ones, pointing out, with a hint of rivalry, where they got their economics doctorates.
At a time when politicians in Washington struggle to agree on anything, their Mexican counterparts—who spent the past dozen years locked in bruising battles—sit down almost daily to talk about thorny issues. Sometimes they tip a glass. Sometimes they share a pizza. And, increasingly, they reach agreements.
In the past eight months, Mexico’s Congress has passed a constitutional change to curb the powerful public teachers union; a legal reform to strip public officials of immunity from criminal prosecution; and a telecommunications bill that sharply limits the quasi-monopolistic powers of the country’s biggest telephone company, controlled by billionaire Carlos Slim.