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Getting it Right

Strategic Priorities for Mexico

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Mexico has been a reform champion, having launched ambitious reforms in a broad range of areas. While the reforms are showing first positive effects they are not delivering to the extent they could. On many dimensions of well-being, including education, health and security amongst others, Mexico still lags behind the OECD average and regional development remains very uneven. While Mexico has done a lot to build a competitive economy, progress has been too slow in two complementary areas, namely strengthening institutions and fostering inclusion. The capacity of the public sector is weak, corruption remains widespread and the rule of law is week, all hindering trust in government institutions and the effective implementation of policies. Similarly, persistent inequalities and widespread poverty do not only mean that higher growth does not translate into widespread gains in well-being; these inequalities are also holding back growth as Mexico is not using all available talent. Mexico has taken measures to tackle these issues, but important implementation gaps remain. It will be important for the next government to build on past reform efforts, ensuring the full and effective implementation of already legislated changes to allow for reform continuity and to launch additional reforms in several priority areas, including the rule of law, education and social protection. Only then will Mexico be able to deliver a higher quality of life for all its people.

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Enhancing public governance

Strong institutions are crucial for strong, inclusive and sustainable growth, not least because they are a necessary requirement for the effective design, promotion and implementation of structural reforms. While successive Mexican governments have worked towards improving the functioning of Mexico’s public sector, institutional capacity remains low and uneven. This hampers the capacity to provide the high quality public goods and services required for speeding up development, especially at the state and local levels. As a result, trust in government institutions keeps falling. To fully reap the benefits of past structural reforms and implement additional ones, the government urgently needs to increase the level of trust. Stepping up the fight against corruption is crucial in this regard.

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