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Factbox: Mexico's presidential candidates on the issues
July 1, 2012 / 3:12 PM / in 5 years

Factbox: Mexico's presidential candidates on the issues

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexico elects a new president on Sunday, with Enrique Pena Nieto of the opposition Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) the clear favorite to win.

Following are some of the policies of the three main candidates.


* Open up state oil giant Pemex to more private investment, looking to Brazil’s Petrobras as a model. He says he would consider a constitutional change to help lure more foreign investment into Mexico’s energy sector.

* Simplify the tax system to reduce the size of the informal economy. Broaden the tax base to boost government revenues.

* Change Mexico’s labor laws to make them more flexible.

* Target annual economic growth of around 6 percent. Maintain similar macroeconomic policies to outgoing President Felipe Calderon.

* Double the number of federal police to tackle violent crime. Promote a unified police force under state command and create a new specialized, military police force.

* Focus on reducing murders, kidnapping, extortions and human trafficking and then on curbing the power of Mexico’s drug gangs. Improve security cooperation with the United States and strengthen financial monitoring to combat money laundering.

* Reform the prison system to rehabilitate inmates, raise the salaries of prison workers and ensure better conditions and reduce corruption inside jails. Build more federal maximum security prisons with the help of private capital.

* Set up special tribunals to address competition disputes.

* Boost investment in infrastructure and spur bank lending while giving more supports to small- and medium-size businesses.

* Increase agricultural productivity to cut food costs and poverty rates.

* Provide universal social security coverage and pensions for the elderly above 65 years old.

* Deepen ties with the United States and the European Union and seek stronger trade ties with China, Japan and India.

* Improve protection for Mexican migrants living abroad, especially in the United States.

* Cut 100 deputies from the 500-member lower house of Congress, of which 40 percent are appointed by their party rather than directly elected. Also cut the number of senators.


* Create 7 million new jobs through 2018. Target economic growth of 6 percent a year.

* Withdraw army units deployed in the drug war from the streets over a six-month period.

* Promises no new taxes and to eliminate Mexico’s alternative minimum tax, known as the IETU, approved under Calderon’s government.

* Promote government austerity to give priority to public works and social spending. Reduce the salaries of high-ranking public sector officials.

* Reduce government corruption.

* To modernize Pemex, follow the model of state-controlled company Statoil in Norway. Change the constitution to give Pemex and the Federal Electricity Commission more autonomy, but leave untouched the article that says only the government can exploit Mexico’s oil resources.

* Ensure national oil demand is covered by, for example, limiting oil exports when the reserve replacement rate falls below 100 percent. Increase the power of the national oil regulator.

* Increase refining capacity by building up to five new refineries to cut Mexico’s gasoline imports.

* Ensure the minimum wage rises more than inflation.

* Break up Mexico’s monopolies by enforcing competitive pricing and increasing penalties for uncompetitive practices.

* Seek to lower telephone and Internet rates and give more space to independent and public broadcasters.

* Press foreign mining firms for higher taxes and better wages.

* Spur financing for small- and mid-sized companies.


* Maintain Calderon’s drug war strategy of deploying thousands of soldiers and federal police on the streets.

* Eliminate immunity from prosecution for all politicians to combat official corruption.

* Modernize the police and security forces. Grow federal police force to 150,000 members

* Speed up judicial reform implemented under Calderon.

* Look to Brazil’s Petrobras as a model for Pemex, including a possible listing of shares or the issuance of “citizen bonds” that pay returns based on the company’s performance.

* Possible constitutional reform to allow for more outside investment in Pemex.

* Exploit shale gas resources and promote more investment in renewable energy. Create strategic alliances with private companies to improve Pemex’s technology and competitiveness.

* Fiscal reform that would increase the tax base, simplify the tax system and reduce tax loopholes.

* Maintain Calderon’s macro-economic policies.

* Comprehensive labor reform to raise productivity and take on Mexico’s powerful public sector unions.

* Give loans to small and medium-sized business.

* Promote more competition in the telecommunications industry by strengthening regulators.

* Lengthen school days, improve teacher evaluations and meet a goal of universal primary school education coverage by 2015.

* Universal basic health insurance and social security.

* Create a national pension program for retirees above 70.

* Promote gender equality and give support to single mothers.

* Seek leading role in global climate change initiatives and the creation of a carbon bond trading system.

* Strengthen ties with Washington to increase bilateral cooperation on intelligence sharing, security and trade.

Reporting by Mica Rosenberg; Editing by Kieran Murray and Sandra Maler

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