The president misses the immigration shot


The president knows this, so his call for the United States to plant young trees and offer scholarships in Central America is just plain talk.

The president is wrong to think that the United States holds the key to stopping Central American immigration. The key was Mexico: In the past 10 years, with increased private investment here, Mexicans have stopped leaving and thousands have returned.

Liberalization of the economy, along with strengthening democratic institutions, led to the return of 300,000 citizens in 2016 and 2017, and at the start of this government, the fewest Mexicans in history lived in the United States.

Since 2009, Mexican illegal immigration flows have begun to decline in line with our economy’s average growth of 2.5 per year. So the key is not for the United States to donate money, but for countries to make money.

That is why the president is wrong, like yesterday, when he asked the United States to pump capital into Central America by planting small trees and giving money to the youth, as his government is doing here, which is just a baseless barrel that solves nothing.

Because what caused the clientelist programs, the curbing of private investment, and the deterioration of democratic institutions during our president’s government, is that Mexicans returned to the United States for the first time in a decade.

According to the US Customs and Border Protection, from October 2019 to June 2021, 479,376 Mexicans were arrested or deported. It’s not the money donated that keeps them here: they’ve been kept by the money earned.

But today in Mexico, making money is much more difficult: investment by entrepreneurs has recorded the worst decline since 1995: it has fallen to 29 percent. In the year 2020 alone, these businessmen withdrew 257,238 million pesos, the largest capital flight from Mexico in its history.

The explanation for Mexicans to immigrate again is the same in government systems that the president has praised in Cuba and Venezuela: crushing private entrepreneurs, who provide jobs. Because of this, they take the wool out of the country.

The president knows this, so his call for the United States to plant young trees and offer scholarships in Central America is just plain talk. And he knows it because, here, more than three million poor have grown in his administration, though he contributes wagons laden with money in return for votes.

Two million pesos are withdrawn daily from each Banco de Bienestar branch, according to the same government. But those who withdraw this money do not know money: it is held by the government, which, when it ceases to receive it, will become immigrants.

This equation is called today’s bread and tomorrow’s hunger.


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