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Population - Local time - Languages - Religion - Political context - Climate - Tourism - Food


Total population (millions): 103.8
Source : World Bank - World Development Indicators

Urban population: 76%
Source : World Bank - World Development Indicators

Average annual population growth: 1.5%
Source : World Bank - World Development Indicators

Surface area (km²) : 1,958,200

Population origin

Origin of the population% Of the population
Half-caste 59.2
Amerindian 29.9
Native European 9.8
Other 1.1

Main Cities Population
City of Mexico 8 463 906
Ecatepec de Morelos 1 687 549
Guadalajara 1 600 894
Puebla 1 399 519
City of Juarez 1 301 452
Tijuana 1 286 187

Local time

It is  %T:%M %A  in Mexico City (GMT-6 in winter, GMT-5 in summer).
It is  %T:%M %A  in Culiacán (GMT-7 in winter, GMT-6 in summer).
It is  %T:%M %A  in Tijuana (GMT-8 in winter, GMT-7 in summer).
Summer time from April to October

Official language: Mexican Spanish. This language differs from Castillan Spanish in two ways: the pronunciation is smoother and more melodious and a lot of Indian words have been incorporated. Furthermore, over 50 languages are spoken in Mexico (about 15% of the population does not speak Spanish)
Business languages: Spanish and English.

Free translation tools

Babel Fish
Free English-Spanish-English translation of texts and web pages

Free French-Spanish-French translation of texts and web pages
Free Spanish-Catalan-English-French Dictionary

Religious practises : Catholics 89.6%
Protestants 4.8%
No religion 3.1%
Jews 0.2%
Others 2.3%.

Political context

Mexico is a Federal republic state based on parliamentary democracy. Mexico (official name: United Mexican States) is a major oil producer and exporter in the world.
President is both the chief of state and head of the government. He is also the commander-in-chief of the military and enjoys the executive powers which include implementation of the law and running the day-to-day affairs of the country . President is elected by a popular vote for a single six-year term. The Cabinet is appointed by the President.
The legislature in Mexico is bicameral. The parliament called National Congress consists of two chambers: the Senate (upper house) having 128 seats out of which 96 members are elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms and remaining 32 are allocated on the basis of each party's popular vote; and the Chamber of Deputies (lower house) having 500 seats out of which 300 members are directly elected by popular vote to serve three-year terms and remaining 200 members are allocated on the basis of each party's popular vote also for three-year terms. Traditionally, the executive has been the dominant branch, with immense powers vested in the President, who promulgates and executes the laws of the parliament. But parliament has now started playing an increasingly important role since 1997 when opposition parties first formed a majority in the legislature. President cannot dissolve the parliament without taking it into confidence but has the power to block or veto its enactment. The people of Mexico enjoy considerable political rights.
Though judiciary in Mexico is independent o f the executive and the legislature, but in reality it is cumbersome and undermined by widespread bribery. The main source of the law is the constitution of 1917. The legal system is a mixture of US constitutional theory and civil law system, in addition to the judicial reviews of various legislative acts. Mexico accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction but with reservations. Spanish is the judicial language in Mexico, but English is widely used .
Mexico is not ruled by law. Widespread violent crime exists in the country. Mexico has one of the highest rates of kidnappings in the world. Foreign nationals cannot expect an impartial trial from the country's judicial system. There is high degree of corruption in the country. Illegal drug money worth billions of dollars is laundered each year in Mexico and country's financial, political, military, and judicial institutions facilitate it.

Major political parties

Mexico has a multi-party system. There are three major political parties in the country: PAN (National Action Party) – a conservative liberal party, PRI (Institutional Revolutionary Party) - when it was founded it was somewhat socialist, currently it is a liberal party ; and PRD (Party of the Democratic Revolution)- a left wing but somewhat socialist party.

Major political leaders

President (outgoing): Vicente FOX Quesada (since December 2000) – PAN
President-elect: Felipe Calderon (will take office on 1 December 2006) -PAN

Next political election dates

Presidential: July 2012
Senate: July 2012
Chamber of Deputies: July 2009






Number of visitors in Mexico 2004 2005 2006 World rank
Number of visitors (1000) 20,618 21,915 21,353 9
Source : World Tourisme Organization, data available in November 2005


Tourist sites
IMexico City: el Templo Mayor, the Cathedral and the historic district.
South of Mexico: Palenque and Chichen Itza, Chiapas (San Cristobal), Oaxaca and the beach of Zipolite, Cancun, Tulum and the Playa del Carmen.

For more information about tourism in Mexico , check out the following web site(s) :
Mexican Tourism Board


Traditional dishes
Guacamole: mushed avocados with tomatoes, onions, and chile.
Mole poblano: chicken and rice with a sauce made of lots of hot peppers and spices, and with chocolate
Tamales: Corn roll stuffed either with chicken, corn flour or vegetables.

Last modified on December 2006

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