Mexico in Facts and Figures

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Learn about Mexico in facts & figures: updated annually, this guide gives you a snapshot of Mexico’s geographic, demographic and economic data.

Last Updated: January 2016

Geographic and Demographic Data

Land Area:

1,972,000 square kilometers; 769,000 square miles.

Location:

Borders immediately south of the United States, in-between the USA and Central America. Mexico is classed as a member of Latin American nations, and is part of the North American Continent (not South America as often thought and sometimes quoted).

Population:

119.5 million in 2015 (Source: INEGI)

Capital City:

Mexico City, with an estimated population (including catchment areas) of over 20 million people.

Language:

Spanish is the official language, but around 50 different languages are also spoken by the indigenous peoples of Mexico, including Nahuatl, Zapotec, Otomi and (in the Yucatan region) various Maya languages.

Religion:

~90% Roman Catholic. Mexico is a politically liberal country that welcomes people of all faiths and religions, as well as those who practice none. Mexican law makes it illegal to discriminate against others here on the grounds of religion, race, socio-economic status, gender, and sexual orientation.

Government:

Federal Republic, democratically elected President, bicameral Congress.

See Also: Mexico Government Structure

President:

Enrique Peña Nieto from the party Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI); Sworn-in Dec. 1, 2012 for a non-renewable six-year term. The next presidential elections are scheduled to take place in the summer of 2018, with the new president-elect taking office the following December.

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Economic Data and Indicators

Currency:

Mexican Peso (100 centavos = 1 Peso). For Exchange Rates and other useful information see Money in Mexico here on Mexperience.

GDP:

Mexico’s Gross Domestic Product is around US$1 trillion. GDP growth in 2016 is expected to be about 2.6%, a slight improvement over 2.5% in 2015. Increases in employment and low inflation were behind the growth of the past year. The Mexican peso’s depreciation against the US dollar has also helped consumption by increasing the amount of pesos that Mexicans receive in remittances from relatives who live in the U.S. Whether consumption holds up in 2016 could depend a lot on how the U.S. economy performs, as Mexico’s industrial sector relies heavily on sales to the U.S. Oil, remittances to Mexico from Mexicans working abroad, tourism and exports of manufactured goods are currently Mexico’s prime sources of foreign income.

Inflation:

The official inflation rate in December 2015 was recorded at 2.1%, the lowest ever for a calendar year, and a significant decline from the 4.2% rate recorded in December 2014. In 2016 it’s expected to be ~3%, in line with the Bank of Mexico’s permanent inflation target.

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Mexico’s Sales Tax Rates

Sales tax in Mexico is known as IVA Impuesto al Valor Agregado, or Value Added Tax (VAT). The rate is 16% for the entire country after tax reforms in January 2014 did away with the lower 11% rate along the US-Mexico border.

Most goods and services, including financial service charges and commissions (and also includes interest on unsecured debts) have the 16% VAT rate applied to them. Notable items exempt from the IVA include staple foods, and medicines.

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Minimum Daily Wage

The official daily minimum wage in Mexico for 2016 rose by 4.2%, slightly more than inflation. The increase was identical to that in 2015 (4.2%).

The minimum salary is now $73.04 Mexican pesos (US$4.05) per day. The variation in minimum salary by ‘Geographic Zone’ was abolished in 2015, and so $73.04 pesos is now a national rate.

See Also: Currency converter.

 

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Economic Activities

Exports of manufactured goods, oil and gas, tourism, mining, chemicals, iron and steel, motor vehicles, agriculture (coffee, sugar, tomatoes, avocados, tobacco), food and beverages, consumer durables.

Major Trading Partners:

USA, Canada, UK, China, Japan.

NAFTA

Mexico is a member of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement).

Other Free Trade Agreements

Besides NAFTA, Mexico has other Free Trade Agreements (FTA’s) with over 40 countries world-wide, including The European Union and Japan.

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