Mexico's economy could grow 5 pct in 2021, says president

2021-02-09 06:12

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MEXICO CITY, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) -- Mexico's economy could grow as much as 5 percent in 2021 as it recovers from the impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Monday.

In his first public appearance since contracting the novel coronavirus disease and quarantining, the president underscored his administration's belief that lifting people out of poverty is good for the economy.

"The most conservative (forecasts) speak of 3.5 percent growth. I estimate that we are going to grow 5 percent this year, that we are going to overcome the economic crisis," Lopez Obrador said during his daily press conference.

The Mexican economy, the second largest in Latin America after Brazil, contracted 8.3 percent in 2020, its worst performance since the 1930s, as a result of the lockdown measures to curb the pandemic.

Lopez Obrador noted that since he took office in December 2018, Mexico has not experienced abrupt devaluations of the currency and inflation has remained relatively under control, despite his administration's push for an increase in the minimum wage.

He also hailed remittances from Mexicans living and working abroad, which injected 40.607 billion U.S. dollars into the economy in 2020.

"We are no longer losing jobs, on the contrary, jobs were recovered in January and jobs are being recovered in February," Lopez Obrador told reporters at the National Palace in Mexico City.

Last year, Mexico lost 647,710 jobs, largely due to the pandemic, according to the records of the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS).

Mexico registered 1,932,145 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of Sunday and 166,200 deaths from the disease.
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