President Enrique Peña Nieto addresses World Economic Forum
President Enrique Peña Nieto has addressed the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos and talked about his reforms and the security situation in the country.
The press release as published on the WEF website is as follows:
• Mexico is on the move after programme of sweeping reforms
• Energy reforms open up oil and gas and electricity to private investment
• “Agenda of changes” includes reforms that will upgrade education, expand credit, improve telecommunications and increase economic competition
Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 23 January 2014 – Mexico is poised for a significant transformation, thanks to a host of constitutional reforms passed in 2013, President Enrique Peña Nieto told the 44th World Economic Forum Annual Meeting. “Mexico is a country on the move, undergoing a transformation in democracy,” he said in a Special Address.
“Democracy has given us the necessary tool to move,” Peña Nieto said. He was alluding to the Pact for Mexico, an agreement between the three leading political parties to approve a wide-ranging package of reforms to labour laws, education and strategic economic sectors, such as oil and gas.
An energy reform passed last December will open up oil and gas for private investment through licences and profit-sharing, and will allow private companies to generate and supply electricity.
Other structural reforms led by the Peña Nieto administration include an education reform to upgrade the quality of teaching and prepare a more productive workforce; a telecommunications reform to expand radio and broadcasting services and stimulate competition in the sector; economic competition legislation “to inhibit monopolistic practices”; and a fiscal reform to expand credit, especially for small and medium-sized businesses.
Peña Nieto said the fiscal reform will “give the Mexican state greater financial capacity”, reduce dependence on oil revenues and encourage formalization of enterprises.
This “agenda of changes” is intended to boost economic growth, which has averaged only 2.4% annually during the past 30 years, and will help create jobs for young people, Peña Nieto said. “We are ready to move forward, excel and have economic development opportunities across our territory and better economic conditions for all Mexicans.”
Peña Nieto said that an energy regulator will be created and that the corporate regime of the national oil monopoly, Pemex, will be changed to make it more competitive.
In response to a question on security and drugs, Peña Nieto said his administration is implementing a three-part strategy. Police institutions will be better trained and equipped and led by a single command; the new system of oral trials “will facilitate applying justice more quickly”; and the attorney-general’s office will become autonomous. He added that homicides linked to organized crime have dropped by about 30% in the past year.