Mexico - Domestic policy

Due to party factionalism, Fox has had difficulty in achieving his election goals, which has resulted in a deterioration in his approval rating in public opinion polls. Fox aims to clean up major problems such as drug-trafficking and illegal migration; major tasks that need support from his party as well as the opposition, and require cooperation from Mexico's powerful neighbor, the United States. Other goals include education reform, improved healthcare, and overcoming widespread poverty. Fox must maintain a delicate balance between his party and the opposition.

High on Fox's list of priorities is economic reform. With Mexico's limited tax base and slipping oil revenues, the country fell into recession early in 2001, despite 6.9% growth in 2000. In efforts to stabilize the economy, Fox cut the government's budget four times in 2001, amounting to US $1.7 billion in cutbacks and announced a US $1.7 billion cutback for the 2002 budget.

In early 2003, Fox was preparing his party for mid-term elections to Congress to be held that July; the elections were seen to be a litmus test on his presidency. Fox in early 2003 held that the opposition was blocking reforms of energy, telecommunications, and labor laws, crucial to refueling the economy, which remained stagnant in 2003 (due in part to the global economic slowdown plaguing Mexico that year). Fox had promised a 7% growth rate for Mexico during his election campaign, and in 2002, the growth rate was a mere 1%. He needs to reduce inflation, attempt to control the national debt, and reduce the deficit, especially if he wishes to attract further foreign investment. Fox in 2003 had to promote the interests of his party, in order to keep it in power, and to attempt to work with the PRI to support many of his bills in Congress.

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