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Mexico-CIA WFB Map (2004).png
 
Introduction Mexico
Background: The site of advanced Amerindian civilizations, Mexico came under Spanish rule for three centuries before achieving independence early in the 19th century. A devaluation of the peso in late 1994 threw Mexico into economic turmoil, triggering the worst recession in over half a century. The nation continues to make an impressive recovery. Ongoing economic and social concerns include low real wages, underemployment for a large segment of the population, inequitable income distribution, and few advancement opportunities for the largely Amerindian population in the impoverished southern states. Elections held in July 2000 marked the first time since the 1910 Mexican Revolution that the opposition defeated the party in government, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Vicente FOX of the National Action Party (PAN) was sworn in on 1 December 2000 as the first chief executive elected in free and fair elections.
 
Geography Mexico
Location: Middle America, bordering the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico, between Belize and the US and bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between Guatemala and the US
Geographic coordinates: 23 00 N, 102 00 W
Map references: North America
Area: total: 1,972,550 sq km
land: 1,923,040 sq km
water: 49,510 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly less than three times the size of Texas
Land boundaries: total: 4,353 km
border countries: Belize 250 km, Guatemala 962 km, US 3,141 km
Coastline: 9,330 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
Climate: varies from tropical to desert
Terrain: high, rugged mountains; low coastal plains; high plateaus; desert
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Laguna Salada -10 m
highest point: Volcan Pico de Orizaba 5,700 m
Natural resources: petroleum, silver, copper, gold, lead, zinc, natural gas, timber
Land use: arable land: 12.99%
permanent crops: 1.31%
other: 85.7% (2001)
Irrigated land: 65,000 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards: tsunamis along the Pacific coast, volcanoes and destructive earthquakes in the center and south, and hurricanes on the Pacific, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean coasts
Environment - current issues: scarcity of hazardous waste disposal facilities; rural to urban migration; natural fresh water resources scarce and polluted in north, inaccessible and poor quality in center and extreme southeast; raw sewage and industrial effluents polluting rivers in urban areas; deforestation; widespread erosion; desertification; deteriorating agricultural lands; serious air and water pollution in the national capital and urban centers along US-Mexico border; land subsidence in Valley of Mexico caused by groundwater depletion
note: the government considers the lack of clean water and deforestation national security issues
Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note: strategic location on southern border of US; corn (maize), one of the world's major grain crops, is thought to have originated in Mexico
 
People Mexico
Population: 104,959,594 (July 2004 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 31.6% (male 16,913,290; female 16,228,552)
15-64 years: 62.9% (male 31,975,391; female 34,090,440)
65 years and over: 5.5% (male 2,618,713; female 3,133,208) (2004 est.)
Median age: total: 24.6 years
male: 23.7 years
female: 25.5 years (2004 est.)
Population growth rate: 1.18% (2004 est.)
Birth rate: 21.44 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Death rate: 4.73 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Net migration rate: -4.87 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.84 male(s)/female
total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 21.69 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 19.65 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
male: 23.63 deaths/1,000 live births
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 74.94 years
male: 72.18 years
female: 77.83 years (2004 est.)
Total fertility rate: 2.49 children born/woman (2004 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.3% (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 160,000 (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths: 5,000 (2003 est.)
Nationality: noun: Mexican(s)
adjective: Mexican
Ethnic groups: mestizo (Amerindian-Spanish) 60%, Amerindian or predominantly Amerindian 30%, white 9%, other 1%
Religions: nominally Roman Catholic 89%, Protestant 6%, other 5%
Languages: Spanish, various Mayan, Nahuatl, and other regional indigenous languages
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 92.2%
male: 94%
female: 90.5% (2003 est.)
 
Government Mexico
Country name: conventional long form: United Mexican States
conventional short form: Mexico
local short form: Mexico
local long form: Estados Unidos Mexicanos
Government type: federal republic
Capital: Mexico (Distrito Federal)
Administrative divisions: 31 states (estados, singular - estado) and 1 federal district* (distrito federal); Aguascalientes, Baja California, Baja California Sur, Campeche, Chiapas, Chihuahua, Coahuila de Zaragoza, Colima, Distrito Federal*, Durango, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Mexico, Michoacan de Ocampo, Morelos, Nayarit, Nuevo Leon, Oaxaca, Puebla, Queretaro de Arteaga, Quintana Roo, San Luis Potosi, Sinaloa, Sonora, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Tlaxcala, Veracruz-Llave, Yucatan, Zacatecas
Independence: 16 September 1810 (from Spain)
National holiday: Independence Day, 16 September (1810)
Constitution: 5 February 1917
Legal system: mixture of US constitutional theory and civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory (but not enforced)
Executive branch: chief of state: President Vicente FOX Quesada (since 1 December 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
election results: Vicente FOX Quesada elected president; percent of vote - Vicente FOX Quesada (PAN) 42.52%, Francisco LABASTIDA Ochoa (PRI) 36.1%, Cuauhtemoc CARDENAS Solorzano (PRD) 16.64%, other 4.74%
elections: president elected by popular vote for a six-year term; election last held 2 July 2000 (next to be held 2 July 2006)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president; note - appointment of attorney general requires consent of the Senate
head of government: President Vicente FOX Quesada (since 1 December 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
Legislative branch: bicameral National Congress or Congreso de la Union consists of the Senate or Camara de Senadores (128 seats; 96 are elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms, and 32 are allocated on the basis of each party's popular vote) and the Federal Chamber of Deputies or Camara Federal de Diputados (500 seats; 300 members are directly elected by popular vote to serve three-year terms; remaining 200 members are allocated on the basis of each party's popular vote, also for three-year terms)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PRI 60, PAN 46, PRD 16, PVEM 5, unassigned 1; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PRI 222, PAN 151, PRD 95, PVEM 17, PT 6, CD 5, unassigned 4; note - special elections were held in December 2003; the PRI and the PRD each won one seat and were each assigned one additional proportional representation seat
elections: Senate - last held 2 July 2000 for all of the seats (next to be held 2 July 2006); Chamber of Deputies - last held 6 July 2003 (next to be held 2 July 2006)
Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice or Suprema Corte de Justicia Nacional (justices or ministros are appointed by the president with consent of the Senate)
Political parties and leaders: Convergence for Democracy or CD [Dante DELGADO Ranauro]; Institutional Revolutionary Party or PRI [Roberto MADRAZO Pintado]; Mexican Green Ecological Party or PVEM [Jorge Emilio GONZALEZ Martinez]; National Action Party or PAN [Luis Felipe BRAVO Mena]; Party of the Democratic Revolution or PRD [Leonel GODOY]; Workers Party or PT [Alberto ANAYA Gutierrez]
Political pressure groups and leaders: Confederation of Employers of the Mexican Republic or COPARMEX; Confederation of Industrial Chambers or CONCAMIN; Confederation of Mexican Workers or CTM; Confederation of National Chambers of Commerce or CONCANACO; Coordinator for Foreign Trade Business Organizations or COECE; Federation of Unions Providing Goods and Services or FESEBES; National Chamber of Transformation Industries or CANACINTRA; National Peasant Confederation or CNC; National Union of Workers or UNT; Regional Confederation of Mexican Workers or CROM; Revolutionary Confederation of Workers and Peasants or CROC; Roman Catholic Church
International organization participation: APEC, BCIE, BIS, CDB, CE (observer), EBRD, FAO, G-3, G-6, G-15, G-19, G-24, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, NAM (observer), NEA, OAS, OECD, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMOVIC, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador-designate Carlos Alberto de ICAZA Gonzalez
FAX: [1] (202) 728-1698
consulate(s): Albuquerque, Brownsville (Texas), Calexico (California), Del Rio (Texas), Detroit, Douglas (Arizona), Eagle Pass (Texas), Fresno (California), Indianapolis (Indiana), Kansas City (Missouri), Las Vegas, McAllen (Texas), Omaha, Orlando, Oxnard (California), Philadelphia, Portland (Oregon), Presidio (Texas), Raleigh, Salt Lake City, San Bernardino, Santa Ana (California), Seattle, Tucson, Yuma (Arizona)
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, El Paso, Houston, Laredo (Texas), Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Nogales (Arizona), Phoenix, Sacramento, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, San Juan (Puerto Rico)
chancery: 1911 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20006
telephone: [1] (202) 728-1600
Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Antonio O. GARZA
embassy: Paseo de la Reforma 305, Colonia Cuauhtemoc, 06500 Mexico, Distrito Federal
mailing address: P. O. Box 9000, Brownsville, TX 78520-0900
telephone: [52] (55) 5080-2000
FAX: [52] (55) 5525-5040
consulate(s) general: Ciudad Juarez, Guadalajara, Monterrey, Tijuana
consulate(s): Hermosillo, Matamoros, Merida, Nogales, Nuevo, Laredo
Flag description: three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), white, and red; the coat of arms (an eagle perched on a cactus with a snake in its beak) is centered in the white band
 
Economy Mexico
Economy - overview: Mexico has a free market economy with a mixture of modern and outmoded industry and agriculture, increasingly dominated by the private sector. Recent administrations have expanded competition in seaports, railroads, telecommunications, electricity generation, natural gas distribution, and airports. Per capita income is one-fourth that of the US; income distribution remains highly unequal. Trade with the US and Canada has tripled since the implementation of NAFTA in 1994. Real GDP growth was a weak -0.3% in 2001, 0.9% in 2002, and 1.2% in 2003, with the US slowdown the principal cause. Mexico implemented free trade agreements with Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and the European Free Trade Area in 2001, putting more than 90% of trade under free trade agreements. The government is cognizant of the need to upgrade infrastructure, modernize the tax system and labor laws, and provide incentives to invest in the energy sector, but progress is slow.
GDP: purchasing power parity - $941.2 billion (2003 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 1.3% (2003 est.)
GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $9,000 (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 4%
industry: 26.4%
services: 69.6% (2003 est.)
Investment (gross fixed): 19.3% of GDP (2003)
Population below poverty line: 40% (2003 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1.6%
highest 10%: 35.6% (2002)
Distribution of family income - Gini index: 53.1 (1998)
Inflation rate (consumer prices): 4.5% (2003 est.)
Labor force: 34.11 million (2003)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 18%, industry 24%, services 58% (2003)
Unemployment rate: 3.3% plus underemployment of perhaps 25% (2003)
Budget: revenues: $148.3 billion
expenditures: $152.4 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2003 est.)
Public debt: 23.1% of GDP (2003)
Agriculture - products: corn, wheat, soybeans, rice, beans, cotton, coffee, fruit, tomatoes; beef, poultry, dairy products; wood products
Industries: food and beverages, tobacco, chemicals, iron and steel, petroleum, mining, textiles, clothing, motor vehicles, consumer durables, tourism
Industrial production growth rate: -0.7% (2003 est.)
Electricity - production: 198.6 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - consumption: 186.7 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports: 77 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports: 2.068 billion kWh (2001)
Oil - production: 3.59 million bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption: 1.507 million bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports: 1.881 million bbl/day (2001)
Oil - imports: 374,700 bbl/day (2001)
Oil - proved reserves: 15.11 billion bbl (1 January 2003)
Natural gas - production: 36.87 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 38.84 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 254 million cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 2.967 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 969.2 billion cu m (1 January 2003)
Current account balance: $-9.15 billion (2003)
Exports: $164.8 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Exports - commodities: manufactured goods, oil and oil products, silver, fruits, vegetables, coffee, cotton
Exports - partners: US 87.6%, Canada 1.8%, Germany 1.2% (2003)
Imports: $168.9 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Imports - commodities: metalworking machines, steel mill products, agricultural machinery, electrical equipment, car parts for assembly, repair parts for motor vehicles, aircraft, and aircraft parts
Imports - partners: US 61.8%, China 5.5%, Japan 4.5% (2003)
Reserves of foreign exchange & gold: $59.02 billion (2003)
Debt - external: $159.8 billion (2003 est.)
Economic aid - recipient: $1.166 billion (1995)
Currency: Mexican peso (MXN)
Currency code: MXN
Exchange rates: Mexican pesos per US dollar - 10.789 (2003), 9.656 (2002), 9.3423 (2001), 9.4556 (2000), 9.5604 (1999)
Fiscal year: calendar year
 
Communications Mexico
Telephones - main lines in use: 15,958,700 (2003)
Telephones - mobile cellular: 28.125 million (2003)
Telephone system: general assessment: low telephone density with about 15.2 main lines per 100 persons; privatized in December 1990; the opening to competition in January 1997 improved prospects for development, but Telemex remains dominant
domestic: adequate telephone service for business and government, but the population is poorly served; mobile subscribers far outnumber fixed-line subscribers; domestic satellite system with 120 earth stations; extensive microwave radio relay network; considerable use of fiber-optic cable and coaxial cable
international: country code - 52; satellite earth stations - 32 Intelsat, 2 Solidaridad (giving Mexico improved access to South America, Central America, and much of the US as well as enhancing domestic communications), numerous Inmarsat mobile earth stations; linked to Central American Microwave System of trunk connections; high capacity Columbus-2 fiber-optic submarine cable with access to the US, Virgin Islands, Canary Islands, Morocco, Spain, and Italy (1997)
Radio broadcast stations: AM 850, FM 545, shortwave 15 (2003)
Radios: 31 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations: 236 (plus repeaters) (1997)
Televisions: 25.6 million (1997)
Internet country code: .mx
Internet hosts: 1,333,406 (2003)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 51 (2000)
Internet users: 10.033 million (2002)
 
Transportation Mexico
Railways: total: 19,510 km
standard gauge: 19,510 km 1.435-m gauge (2003)
Highways: total: 329,532 km
paved: 108,087 km (including 6,429 km of expressways)
unpaved: 221,445 km (1999 est.)
Waterways: 2,900 km
note: navigable rivers and coastal canals (2004)
Pipelines: crude oil 28,200 km; petroleum products 10,150 km; natural gas 13,254 km; petrochemical 1,400 km (2003)
Ports and harbors: Acapulco, Altamira, Bahias de Huatulco, Cabo San Lucas, Coatzacoalcos, Dos Bocas, Ensenada, Guaymas, Lazaro Cardenas, Manzanillo, Mazatlan, Puerto Progreso, Puerto Madero, Puerto Vallarta, Salina Cruz, Tampico, Topolobampo, Tuxpan, Veracruz (2003)
Merchant marine: total: 50 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 649,389 GRT/942,766 DWT
by type: bulk 1, cargo 3, chemical tanker 3, combination ore/oil 1, liquefied gas 5, petroleum tanker 25, roll on/roll off 9, short-sea/passenger 3
foreign-owned: Denmark 1, Germany 1, Greece 1, Marshall Islands 1, Netherlands 2
registered in other countries: 13 (2004 est.)
Airports: 1,827 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways: total: 233
over 3,047 m: 12
2,438 to 3,047 m: 28
914 to 1,523 m: 80
under 914 m: 29 (2004 est.)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 84
Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1,600
under 914 m: 1,075 (2004 est.)
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 454
1,524 to 2,437 m: 69
Heliports: 2 (2003 est.)
 
Military Mexico
Military branches: National Defense Secretariat (Sedena) (including Army and Air Force), Navy Secretariat (including Naval Air and Marines)
Military manpower - military age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory military service, conscript service obligation - 12 months; 16 years of age with consent for voluntary enlistment (2004)
Military manpower - availability: males age 15-49: 27,374,153 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service: males age 15-49: 19,755,614 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually: males: 1,055,368 (2004 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure: $5,168.3 million (2003)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 0.9% (2003)
This page was last updated on 1 January 2003



This is a snapshot of the CIA World Fact Book as it existed on 26 March 2005