Murders in Mexico fell for a third straight year in 2014 — the most pronounced declines occurring along the U.S. border — a sign the country is slowly stabilizing after gruesome drug wars.
There were 15,649 people murdered in Mexico in 2014, a 13.8 percent reduction from the previous year and down from a peak of 22,480 in 2011, according to a report set to be released Thursday by the University of San Diego’s Justice in Mexico Project.
The reductions were steeper along the U.S.-Mexican border. Five of the six Mexican states that border the USA reported a combined drop of 17.7 percent in the number of homicides.
“These data really help to underscore that we’re talking about a sea change in violence,” said David Shirk, co-author of the report and director of the Justice in Mexico Project. “You still have elevated levels of crime, so we still have a long way to go. But there is improvement, and we have to acknowledge that improvement and understand why it’s happening so we can try to further it.”
NYT – A significant drop in the number of children apprehended at the United States-Mexico border in recent months sprang from Mexico’s record number of deportations of minors traveling without a guardian, according to an analysis released Tuesday.
UT San Diego -Two underground tunnels dug beneath the California-Mexico border have been discovered in a two-day period. The first was found Monday near Calexico across from Mexicali. The second was an incomplete passageway discovered Tuesday in the Tijuana River Valley.
WSJ -Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria said net profit more than doubled in the first quarter of the year on improved lending income and stronger profit in Mexico, countering weaker returns in South America.
Bloomberg – Capital Reforma is part of a decade-long building spree that threatens to leave Mexico City with a large surplus of office space as the fall in oil prices undermines the economy. The new buildings, repaved streets and gardens have revitalized this historic financial district, bisected by Paseo de la Reforma. Now investors in the new real estate investment trusts that financed the towers face the prospect of higher vacancies and lower returns.
World Socialist – Over the past week, there has been a general winding down of the strike by farm workers of the San Quintin Valley in Baja California. Negotiations have been ongoing as the workers continue to reach out to the government to mediate the bargaining process.
Reuters – Mexican supermarket chain Chedraui reported a 10 percent rise in first-quarter profit, helped by a pickup in sales at existing and new stores. Chedraui, Mexico’s No. 3 retailer, reported a profit of 460 million pesos ($30 million).
The Drum – Mobile advertising in Mexico is expected to reach $390 million in 2015, an 81 per cent increase from last year, according to eMarketer. The ads are expected to increase more than four times by 2019 to reach $1.7 billion.
EFE – Output by Mexican state-owned oil giant Petroleos Mexicanos’ exploration and production unit was unaffected by the alleged fraud committed by oil-services company Oceanografia, Pemex executives told members of a special Senate committee.
Bloomberg – Months after acquiring Mexican oil with the biggest discount in 20 years, Asian refiners are finding problems. At least two buyers experienced difficulty processing Mexican oil because of its impurities.
Sentido Comun – Petroleos Mexicanos announced that the construction of 22 vessels progresses after its and the Navy’s engineers reviewed the progress of the program. Pemex plans to spend 3,400 million pesos ($223.4 million) to build the boats.
Sentido Comun – The Ministry of Communications and Transport (SCT) announced new criteria for regulating the flight of unmanned aerial vehicles, better known as drones, to preserve the safety of the public and operators of these aircraft.
Dario – The president of Ford Chihuahua and the governor placed the first stone on the third floor of what by 2017 will be the country’s and the world’s largest automobile complex, with an area of 37 acres and three stories. One million gasoline engines, diesel and hybrid cars will be produced annually for sale in Mexico, USA, Canada, South America and the Asia-Pacific.
With a football legend, a famous clown, a former Big Brother contestant and several soap stars in the running, the list of candidates in Mexico’s forthcoming elections reads more like the line-up of a television panel show. But the emergence of these maverick contenders reflects a growing sense of disillusionment, which has been compounded by a high-profile movement to boycott the elections.
Enrique Peña Nieto, who has the lowest approval rating of any president in the past two decades, still has three years left in office, but there are more than 1,200 positions at stake in the mayoral and congressional contests to be decided on June 7.
This is the first time independent candidates have been allowed to participate in Mexico, an unwelcome development for the three major parties that have been tarred by years of bloodshed.
LAT – The number of immigrants caught crossing the Southwest border continues to fall sharply, Obama administration officials, a decline due in large part to the end of the surge in people coming from Central America.