General Information<br /><ul><li>Formal Name: United Mexican States
Capital: Mexico City with a population estimated at 8.8 million in 2008
Major Cities: The Greater Mexico City metropolitan area, Ecatepec de Morelos (1.8 million residents), Netzahualcoyotl (1.2 million), Guadalajara (1.6 million), Puebla (1.3 million), Ciudad Juarez (1.2 million), Tijuana (1.1 million), and Monterrey
Public Holidays: New Year’s Day (January 1); Constitution Day (February 5); Birthday of Benito Juarez (March 21); International Labor Day (May 1); Independence Day (September 16); Discovery of America (October 12); Anniversary of the Revolution (November 20); Christmas (December 25); and New Year’s Eve (December 31).</li></li></ul><li>General Information<br /><ul><li>Population: 113,724,226 million (July 2011 est.)
Legal system: Mixture of US constitutional theory and civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations
Executive branch: chief of state: President Felipe de Jesus Calderon Hinojosa (since 1 December 2006; both the chief of state and head of government). Cabinet: Appointed by the president with the consent of the Senate. Elections: president elected by popular vote for a single six-year term.
Legislative branch: bicameral National Congress or Congress de la Union consists of the Senate or Camera de Senators (128 seats; 96 members elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms, and 32 seats allocated on the basis of each party's popular vote) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camera de Diputados (500 seats; 300 members are elected by popular vote; remaining 200 members are allocated on the basis of each party's popular vote and serve three-year terms).
Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice or Supreme Corte de Justice de la Nation (justices are appointed by the president with consent of the Senate).
Political parties: Institutional Revolutionary Party or PRI. Labor Party or PT, Mexican Green Ecological Party or PVEM, National Action Party or PAN, New Alliance Party or PNA/PANAL, Party of the Democratic Revolution.</li></li></ul><li>Major Historical and Political Dates<br /><ul><li>1521 - Spaniards led by Hernan Cortes capture the Aztec capitol, initiating three centuries of colonial rule.
1988 - Carlos Salinas is elected amid charges of fraud .
1989 – First governorship is won by on opposition party.
1994 - NAFTA goes into effect; uprising in Chiapas; Celosia assassinated.
1996 -Political parties agree on electoral reform .
1997 - Opposition parties advance nationwide; Purl loses absoluter majority incongress or first time in its history.
2000 - PRI loses presidency: Vicente Fox becomes president, but without majority support in congress.</li></li></ul><li>Economy<br /><ul><li>GDP: $1.56 trillion (2010 est.), (agriculture: 4.2%, industry: 33.3%, services: 62.5% (2010 est.)
Economy type: Mexico has a free market economy, a mixture of industry and agriculture dominated by the private sector. Income distribution remains highly unequal. Biggest trade partners are the U.S. and Canada. Mexico has free trade agreements with over 50 countries. The administration continues to face many economic challenges, including improving the public education system, upgrading infrastructure, modernizing labor laws, and fostering private investment in the energy sector while the top priority is given to reducing poverty and creating jobs.
Industries: food and beverages, tobacco, chemicals, iron and steel, petroleum, mining, textiles, clothing, motor vehicles, consumer durables, tourism</li></li></ul><li>Mexico Today <br />
Culture<br />Mexican culture is one of the most unique in the world. Due to the legacy that it inherited from ancient civilization of Maya and Aztecs and the European input, Mexican art, architecture, and style, and traditions are attracting visitors from all over the world.<br />
Issues - Poverty<br /><ul><li>Poverty has always been an issue in Mexico. However, in the 1990 Mexican government started showing some progress taking it under control. Despite all the efforts half of the Mexican people continue to live below poverty line. Over ten present of the population lives in extreme poverty. Most of them are not able to get medical services and welfare. The government has been able to take the issues of infant mortality, literacy, and life expectancy under control. Yet, Mexico still has insufficient middle class.
Small middle class has been a problem in Mexico die to the ineffectiveness and lack of social reforms during the years of the most rapid economic growth. Compare to Mexico, the other countries like Costa Rica, Colombia. Argentina, and Chile were more successful fighting poverty. Currently, Mexico has one of the largest gaps between rich and poor in Latin America. </li>