The site of several advanced Amerindian civilizations - including the Olmec, Toltec, Teotihuacan, Zapotec, Maya, and Aztec - Mexico was conquered and colonized by Spain in the early 16th century. Administered as the Viceroyalty of New Spain for three centuries, it achieved independence early in the 19th century. Elections held in 2000 marked the first time since the 1910 Mexican Revolution that an opposition candidate - Vicente FOX of the National Action Party (PAN) - defeated the party in government, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). He was succeeded in 2006 by another PAN candidate Felipe CALDERON, but Enrique PEÑA NIETO regained the presidency for the PRI in 2012. Left-leaning anti-establishment politician and former mayor of Mexico City (2000-05) Andrés Manuel LÓPEZ OBRADOR, from the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA), became president in December 2018.
Mexico is currently the second-largest (after Canada) goods trading partner of the US with nearly $780 billion in two-way goods trade in 2022. Mexico's GDP contracted by 8.2% in 2020 due to pandemic-induced closures, its lowest level since the Great Depression. Mexico’s economy is rebounding; it grew by 4.8% in 2021, driven largely by increased remittances, despite supply chain and pandemic-related challenges, and grew by 3% in 2022.
The US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA, or T-MEC by its Spanish acronym) entered into force on 1 July 2020 and replaced its predecessor, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Mexico amended its constitution on 1 May 2019 to facilitate the implementation of the labor components of USMCA.
Ongoing economic and social concerns include low real wages, high underemployment, inequitable income distribution, and few advancement opportunities, particularly for the largely indigenous population in the impoverished southern states. Since 2007, Mexico's powerful transnational criminal organizations have engaged in a struggle to control criminal markets, resulting in tens of thousands of drug-related homicides and forced disappearances.
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NOTE: The information regarding Mexico on this page is re-published from the 2023 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Mexico 2023 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Mexico 2023 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.
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