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This is a Mexico far different from the popular American conception: it is neither the grinding, low-skilled assembly work at maquiladoras, the multinational factories near the border, nor the ugliness of drug cartels. But the question many experts and officials are asking is whether Mexico as a whole can keep up with the rising demand for educated labor — and overcome concerns about crime and corruption — to propel its 112 million people into the club of developed nations.
People can thank NAFTA (and the USA) for helping to provide the opportunity for more people to move up the economic ladder in Mexico (and the USA can and should thank Mexico for providing good quality products at "affordable" prices). But this transformation has been underway for 20 years or so now; it's not new. What's new is the spurt in construction of automobile assembly plants, and suppliers, which we see in the Central Highlands: the states of Guanajuato and Aguascalientes, and then over in Puebla.

It's the international companies seeking to sell cars, trucks, appliances, computers, etc., which are creating the jobs, paing the higher wages, supporting the economy in many places ... as they look for ways to inexpensively put together and ship product to the USA.

What'll hold Mexico back is the endemic, deep-rooted culture of corruption which so many Mexicans rely on for income, the terrible public education system which leaves behind millions who are poorly educated and unprepared for an economically viable future ... and the war and related terrorism and the expansion of the criminal enterprises which negatively impact so many businesses and people in Mexico.

Mexico has always been a nation where one has to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps, amidst the efforts of so many others trying to knock them back down, and it's a credit to the fortitude of so many in the country who've overcome those obstacles.

My 2 cents worth.
 
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