MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - President Vicente Fox paused for a long moment before answering a question on how long it would take Mexico to reach a stage where citizens no longer want to cross the U.S. border to seek work.Of course, the mean salary is much lower than $44,000, but what the heck. It's still lots more than they can get in Mexico. The real solution is to raise the standard of living in Mexico, but who has time to do that when there's so much to do to lower the standard here?
'Generations,' he finally said.
'It's a long way to narrow the gap ... between incomes in Mexico and on the other side of the border,' he said in a recent interview with Reuters.
That income gap is the principal reason why hundreds of thousands of Mexicans cross the border with the U.S. illegally to seek work -- yet it rarely figures in the heated and increasingly emotional debate over immigration now raging in the United States.
Roughly half of Mexico's population lives on less than $5 a day, according to government figures. The U.S. minimum wage is $5.15 an hour. Annual Mexican Gross Domestic Product per capita is just under $7,000. It is almost $44,000 in the United States.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
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