Since early in his campaign to win Mexico’s presidency, Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO), has put the domestic agenda above another commitment with other countries, putting the fight to end corruption, impunity, as well as fostering public and private investments as the main components of his program, leaving international affairs as a second.
In this sense, regarding migration, AMLO has stated that “ensuring that Mexicans don’t have to migrate because of poverty or violence” as his main strategy.
Here are some of AMLO’s statements on immigration and regional cooperation with the US and Central America:
From the first of December of this year, we will have more public investment which will be used as seed capital to encourage private investment and to allocate significant budgets to production, job creation, reactivation of the agricultural and energy sector, education, culture, and health; as well as the financing of regional development from south to north, with the implementation of projects to retain the population in their towns, expanding opportunities for work and well-being.
I believe that the migratory problem should be addressed in a comprehensive manner, through a development plan that includes the Central American countries, where millions of inhabitants do not have work opportunities and are forced to leave their towns to make a living and mitigate their hunger and poverty.
If the United States and Mexico participate in this plan, and include the Central American countries, each one contributing according to the size of its economy, we could collect a considerable amount of resources for the development of the region, of which 75 percent would be directed to finance projects to create jobs and fight poverty, and the remaining 25 percent, [would be directed to] border control and security. In this way, I reiterate, we would be addressing the causes that originate the migratory phenomenon. At the same time, each government, from Panama to the Rio Grande, would work to make the migration of their citizens economically unnecessary and take care of their borders to prevent the illegal transit of goods, weapons and drug trafficking, which we consider to be the most humane and effective guarantee of peace, tranquility and security of our peoples and nations.
More recently, AMLO hast told the members of the exodus from Central America that, in his administration, he will offer employment to all international population that is willing to work in Mexico.
Based on this statements, AMLO’s approach to migration emphasizes the role of Mexico, and particularly the role of its federal government, in regional mobility, and has domestic economic development and anti-corruption efforts as the center of his offering to make migration a choice and not a necessity.
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