Mexico is the fifth largest country in the Americas and the most populous Spanish speaking country on earth. It is a federation of states, and its official name is United Mexican States. Mexico is an important oil producer and exporter, and a huge portion of its revenue comes from this industry. Recently, however, the production has slowed down, as the global demand for crude oil diminished to a great extent. In the north, Mexico borders the United States, and the two economies have been interdependent for a long time.
Mexico is an interesting country with beautiful beaches and amazing terrain, where tourists love to visit and explore the remains of some of the oldest civilizations. Mexican archeological sites, including the areas of the Olmecs, Zapotes, Teotihuacans, Mayas, and Aztects fascinate explorers and visitors from all over the world. These cultures developed complex societies and, amazingly, reached high levels of technological evolution.
Mexico is also a country of drastic contrasts, where affluence and poverty are visibly defined. Most Mexicans who live in rural areas experience poverty and hardship, as those parts of the country remain neglected. As a result many of the poorest attempt to cross the 3,000-km border with the United States, in search of better lives. Many of them die of heat exhaustion and dehydration. Those who cross the border become migrant workers, who support their families in Mexico. With the recent downturn in the United States economy, Mexican economy has been greatly affected. The current president, Felipe Calderon, from the conservative National Action Party, won the election in 2006 and has been advocating his plans to fight poverty, to tackle violent crime and corruption, to create jobs, and to raise salaries in the army. The latter is essential in the war against crime, which is one of the central problems in Mexico. The fight against drug cartels remains the central issue for the government, yet the killings and kidnappings persist, and last year only estimated 6,500 people lost their lives.
MEXICO - IMPORTANT FACTS
Full name: United Mexican States
Population: 109.6 million (UN, 2009)
Capital: Mexico City
Area: 1.96 million sq km (758,449 sq miles)
Major language: Spanish
Major religion: Christianity
Life expectancy: 74 years (men), 79 years (women) (UN)
Monetary unit: 1 peso = 100 centavosMain exports: Machinery and transport equipment, mineral fuels and lubricants, food and live animals
GNI per capita: US $9,980 (World Bank, 2008)
Internet domain: .mx
International dialling code: +52