SAN ANTONIO, Texas – Presidents Barack Obama and Enrique Peña Nieto began their presidential terms at about the same time. Mr. Obama embarks on his second four year term while Enrique Peña Nieto begins his six year term.
Even though we have not seen a noteworthy headline as to the new relationship between the two countries since the recent announcement of a planned visit by President Obama to Mexico this coming May, this does not mean that the bilateral relationship has diminished in importance or that the flow of trade, finance, tourism, academics or day to day relations has declined.
On the contrary, the bilateral relationship’s prospects for the future are excellent. On one hand, Obama’s decision to pursue comprehensive immigration reform (“the whole enchilada”) and the apparent interest of the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives to do so, despite some members’ party affiliation, is good news for Mexico. Approximately 11 million Mexicans live, work and study in the United States.
For its part, Mexico is demonstrating a commitment to pursue structural reforms in the education, energy and public finance sectors. Adoption of both the Pact for Mexico (“El Pacto por México”), which was called for by President Peña Nieto and was based on collaboration with Mexico’s three major political parties (PRI, PAN and PRD), and the Amendment of the PRI’s party Bylaws and platform all point to progress in Mexico.
Proposed energy reforms would open the energy sector, specifically PEMEX, to participation by the private sector, which would lead to a modernization and consolidation of the energy sector.
Given that both governments have been occupied with domestic initiatives such as defining plans, appointing officials and public management, we have not heard much about the bilateral relationship between Mexico and the United States. The recently announced May visit of Mr. Obama to Mexico City will surely confirm there is an interesting future for the Mexico-United States relationship.
Dr. Mario Melgar-Adalid is a member of Mexico’s National System of Researchers (SNI). He is a Law researcher at UNAM’s Institute of Juridical Research and currently an Of Counsel at Cacheaux, Cavazos & Newton, L.L.P. in San Antonio. He writes a regular column for CCN’s monthly Mexico Report, which also appears in the Guardian. To view all previous versions of the CCN Mexico Report, go to: http://www.ccn-law.com/