February 12, 2021
1. Federal authorities seek to facilitate remittance process
In order to propose an alternative to the amendments to the Banco de México Law proposed a few months ago, Finance Minister Arturo Herrera, announced a plan that will allow Mexican nationals residing in the United States to reduce transaction costs and times. Among the actions proposed include an initiative with the Mexican Banking Association (ABM) to offer a preferential exchange rate for the transfer of remittances.
For his part, Alejandro Díaz de León, governor of Banco de Mexico, announced financial support for banks that have difficulties repatriating excess U.S. dollars, as well as the creation of a series of tools to ease the acquisition of financial products for remittance processing.
2. Federal government reports progress on priority projects
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador inaugurated the first stage of the Felipe Ángeles International Airport, estimating that it will be formally inaugurated on March 21st, 2022. He also presented a progress report on other projects that his administration has touted, such as the construction of the Dos Bocas Refinery, the Mexico-Toluca Interurban Railway and the Chapultepec Forest Nature and Culture project.
On the other hand, the Collegiate Tribunal on Labor and Administrative Matters provisionally suspended the construction of the Mayan Train in Yucatán after groups from the state opposed the construction, considering it an illegal invasion of their territories, in addition to the fact that it does not have environmental impact authorizations approved.
3. Coneval: Nine million people at risk of falling into poverty
The National Council for Social Development Policy Evaluation (Coneval) released its 2020 Social Development Policy Evaluation Report, in which it stated that, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately 9.8 million people are at risk of falling below the poverty line and nearly 10.7 million people are susceptible to falling below the Extreme Poverty Line.
According to Coneval, although the government has implemented Comprehensive Welfare Programs to assist the population most affected by the health crisis, these are focused mainly on the transfer of direct economic support rather than on the prevention, mitigation and attention to risks currently faced by vulnerable populations.
4. Deputies seek to legislate on cybersecurity issues
After a series of critiques made by legislators due to potential implications of the topic, the Constitutional Issues Commission of the Chamber of Deputies postponed a vote to reform Article 73 of the Constitution on cybersecurity, which, among other things, considers the dissemination of false news against the government a matter of national security and seeks to grant powers to Congress to legislate on cybersecurity.
Aleida Alavez Ruiz, president of the Commission, indicated that an open session of parliament will be convened to host an audience of experts on the topic, slated to take place on February 26th.
5. Former Puebla Governor Mario Marín sentenced to prison on torture charges
After being arrested on February 3rd in Acapulco, the Second District Court in Quintana Roo issued a formal arrest warrant for former Puebla Governor Mario Marín on charges of torture. Watchdog group ARTICLE 19 and journalist Lydia Cacho celebrated the court’s decision on their social networks.
In 2006, journalist Lydia Cacho was arrested and tortured by the Puebla Public Prosecutor’s Office after denouncing a child sexual exploitation network in her book Los demonios del edén (The Demons of Eden). That same year, through a recording, the former governor’s participation was discovered, and he was accused of being the intellectual author of the network. Former governor Marín is the first high-level Mexican official to be prosecuted for acts of torture.
El País: Dan formal prisión a Mario Marín, exgobernador de Puebla, por delito de tortura contra Lydia Cacho.
El Financiero: Dan formal prisión a Mario Marín, exgobernador de Puebla, por delito de tortura contra Lydia Cacho.