- President Donald Trump’s threats to impose tariffs on Mexican products have put that country’s economy in the spotlight.
- Despite Mexico having the 15th largest GDP in the world, about half of all Mexican citizens live in poverty.
- Here are 11 surprising facts about Mexico’s economy.
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Last week, President Donald Trump’s threat to impose a 5% tariff on all Mexican imports was narrowly averted — perhaps only temporarily — thanks to a last-minute agreement for Mexico to stem illegal immigration to the US.
The news has thrust Mexico’s economy into the global spotlight.
Mexico has a strong economy with a gross domestic product that ranks 15th globally, thanks largely to its manufacturing and petroleum exports. But Mexico is also a nation of contradictions. Its economic power translates poorly to the country’s populace, almost half of which live in poverty.
Meanwhile, Carlos Slim, Mexico’s richest man and the sixth richest person in the world, has a net worth equal to 5% of Mexico’s entire GDP.
Here are 11 surprising facts about Mexico’s economy:
More Mexicans are leaving the US for Mexico than the other way around
Although Mexican immigration is the subject of fierce debate in American politics, the fact remains that immigration is going in the opposite direction.
Statistics from the Pew Research Center show that from 2009 to 2014, about 1 million Mexican immigrants and their American-born children left the US to return to Mexico, while about 870,000 Mexicans entered the US in the same time span.
Mexico has more than four times Canada’s population, but its GDP is smaller
NAFTA has been a boon to the economies of its member nations, perhaps none more so than Mexico.
But Mexico still trails its North American partner Canada in terms of gross domestic product. In 2017, Mexico’s GDP was 1.15 trillion, compared to Canada’s 1.68 trillion.
It’s worth noting that Mexico’s population of about 126 million is more than four times that of Canada.
Of course, both marks are still eclipsed by the United States’ $18 trillion GDP.
Mexico is the No. 1 source of imported cars in the US
David McNew/Getty Images
Mexico has become an integral part of the US automotive industry.
Not only do American carmakers build a significant portion of their cars in Mexico, but 89 of the world’s top 100 auto-part makers have production facilities in the country.
Last year, the US imported $93 billion worth of cars and car parts from Mexico. Many auto brands continue to make significant investments in Mexican factories, including Ford, Audi, Mercedes Benz, BMW, and Nissan.
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