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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Drug violence cutting into Mexican economy

B. Thomas Cooper - Editor

The increase in drug cartel related violence throughout Mexico is having a negative impact on the Mexican economy as thousands of U.S. citizens choose to stay home this Spring rather than risk the dangers associated with traveling south of the border.

The upsurge in violence is proving disastrous for the Mexican economy, much of which is heavily reliant on tourism, down sharply from previous years. Many traditional ‘Spring Break’ hot-spots have experienced dramatic decreases in revenue.

The quiet seaside villages south of Tijuana, many already poverty stricken, have been especially devastated by the lack of seasonal tourists. Local beaches, restaurants and hotels show little signs of activity. Anxious vendors still wait diligently for the occasional tourist, but few arrive, and resources are dwindling.

Mexican auto insurance, long a dependable revenue stream for borders towns, has also experienced a precipitous drop in sales. Mexico law requires that all vehicles visiting Mexico purchase auto insurance before entering the country. Most U.S. insurance companies do not cover accidents that occur while in Mexico.

Mexico's notorious Gulf Cartel is blamed for much of the recent drug violence, including the kidnapping of a Nuevo Leon police chief whose decapitated body was discovered a short distance from his abandoned vehicle over the weekend.

Drug related violence is nothing new along the northern border towns of Mexico, but a growing rivalry between two competing cartels, the much feared Gulf Cartel and 'Los Zetas' has led to unbridled bloodshed throughout the region.

B. Thomas Cooper - Editor

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