Doing Business

Doing Business in Mexico 2015

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 15 of 259

2 Tax and Legal Services - PwC Mexico Geography and climate Mexico (officially the United Mexican States) has an area of 760,000 square miles (1,970,000 square km), the twelfth country in the world in size, and occupies the southern part of North America. It is the third-largest country in Latin America after Brazil and Argentina. Almost 40% of Mexico, including the entire northern part of the country, is arid or semiarid. Annual rainfall increases toward the south where there are zones with the highest levels of rainfall in the world; the rainy season usually runs from May to October, with very little rainfall during the rest of the year, except in the coastal area near the Gulf of Mexico. Nevertheless, the climate varies widely, in part because of the wide variation in altitudes in the country and the effect of the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico on the coastal areas. Mexico City and many other regions in the central part of the country have a semitropical climate. There are very few regions, aside from the higher mountains, where it snows regularly in winter. Most of the coastal regions have a humid, tropical climate. Mexico's geographical features range from swamp to desert and from tropical lowland jungle to high alpine vegetation. The altitude of more than half the national territory is +1,000 m (3,300 ft). The central land mass is a plateau flanked by ranges of mountains to the east and west that lie roughly parallel to the coast. The southern part of the plateau includes Mexico City, the political, economic and population center of the country, located at an altitude of about 7,500 feet (2,240 meters), one of the highest cities of the world. The northern area of this plateau is arid and thinly populated, and occupies 40% of the total area of Mexico. The Mexico City metropolitan area has an average mean temperature of 63°F (17°C), with occasional lows of around 32°F (0°C) in December and January and highs near 86°F (30°C) in April or May before the beginning of the rainy season. History For more than 300 years Mexico was ruled as a tightly controlled colony of Spain. Independence in 1821 was followed by decades of struggle for political power and slow economic development, until the 30 years of internal peace achieved under Porfirio Díaz around the end of the 19th century. During this period, the great haciendas, huge areas of land used for cattle raising and farming, reached their peak, although with little improvement in the economic condition of the great majority of the people. The Mexican revolution of 1910 was followed by more than ten years of civil war, which almost completely destroyed the agricultural economy of the country. Accordingly, although Mexican cultural, social and political life reflects the cumulative development of more than 10 centuries since the Spanish conquest and the earlier Aztec, Mayan and other civilizations, the economy of modern Mexico is only some 90 years old, originating in the late 1920s.

Articles in this issue

view archives of Doing Business - Doing Business in Mexico 2015