FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Mexico After NAFTA

by SETH SANDRONSKY

On April 17, the Washington Post ran an article about Mexico’s economy and the North American Free Trade Agreement, which took effect on January 1, 1994. Part of the focus was on market forces and the flight of some Mexicans to the U.S.

“Still, the past 13 years haven’t been all bad economic news for Mexico,” wrote Manuel Roig-Franzia of the Post’s Foreign Service. “Spurred by NAFTA, Mexico’s gross domestic product has ballooned, multiplying nearly seven-fold, from $108 billion in 1993, the year before NAFTA implementation, to $748 billion in 2005.”

If the Post’s data for Mexico’s GDP, or the market price of all goods and services produced within the country annually, was correct, it would be a world record for economic growth, according to economist Dean Baker, co-director of Center for Economic and Policy Review. Thus, economists and staff at the CEPR repeatedly contacted the Post concerning the assertion that Mexico’s GDP grew at a 17.5 percent annual rate over the past 13 years.

In fact, Mexico’s GDP grew at a 2.9 percent annual rate since 1993, the International Monetary Fund states on its Web site. Mexico’s per person GDP growth was 1.3 percent per year from 1993 to 2005 versus GDP growth per person of nearly 4.0 percent per year between 1960 and 1980, Baker adds.

Crucially, the Mexican economy as measured by GDP grew at an annual rate six times slower than what the Post reported for the 13 years ending in 2005. This is no small error for the top paper in the capital city of the U.S.

Does the IMF have a lock on growth figures for Mexico? No.

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Bank also have GDP data for Mexico. And as of May 26, the Post had not printed a correction to its April 17 article, which reported that the Mexican economy “has ballooned” between 1993 and 2005.

Still, the paper’s ombudsman wrote on May 7: “The Washington Post is committed to correcting all errors that appear in the newspaper, just as we are committed to the kind of careful journalism that will minimize the number of errors we print. Preventing and correcting mistakes are two sides of the coin of our realm: accuracy. Accuracy is our goal, and candor is our defense.”

The April 17 article ran on the front page of the Post. If the paper corrects the reporter’s error on Mexico’s GDP, will this admission find a home on page one?

SETH SANDRONSKY is a member of Sacramento Area Peace Action and a co-editor of Because People Matter, Sacramento’s progressive paper. He can be reached at ssandron@hotmail.com

 

 

Seth Sandronsky is a Sacramento journalist and member of the freelancers unit of the Pacific Media Workers Guild. Emailsethsandronsky@gmail.com

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

March 22, 2017
Paul Street
Russiagate and the Democratic Party are for Chumps
Russell Mokhiber
Single-Payer, the Progressive Caucus and the Cuban Revolution
Gavin Lewis
McCarthyite Anti-Semitism Smears and Racism at the Guardian/Observer
Kathy Kelly
Reality and the U.S.-Made Famine in Yemen
Kim C. Domenico
Ending Our Secret Alliance with Victimhood: Toward an Adult Politics
L. Ali Khan
Profiling Islamophobes
Calvin Priest
May Day: Seattle Educators Moving Closer to Strike
David Swanson
Jimmy Breslin on How to Impeach Trump
Dave Lindorff
There Won’t Be Another Jimmy Breslin
Jonathan Latham
The Meaning of Life
Robert Fisk
Martin McGuinness: From “Super-Terrorist” to Super Statesman
Steve Horn
Architect of Federal Fracking Loophole May Head Trump Environmental Council
Binoy Kampmark
Grief, Loss and Losing a Father
Jim Tull
Will the Poor Always Be With Us?
Jesse Jackson
Trump’s “March Massacre” Budget
Joe Emersberger
Rafael Correa and the Future of Ecuador: a Response to James McEnteer
March 21, 2017
Reshmi Dutt-Ballerstadt
On Being the “Right Kind of Brown”
Kenneth Surin
God, Guns, Gays, Gummint: the Career of Rep. Bad Bob Goodlatte
David Rosen
Popular Insurgencies: Reshaping the Political Landscape
Ryan LaMothe
The Totalitarian Strain in American Democracy
Eric Sommer
The House Intelligence Committee: Evidence Not Required
Mike Hastie
My Lai Massacre, 49 Years Later
James McEnteer
An Era Ends in Ecuador: Forward or Back?
Evan Jones
Beyond the Pale
Stansfield Smith
First Two Months in Power: Hitler vs. Trump
Dulce Morales
A Movement for ‘Sanctuary Campuses’ Takes Shape
Pepe Escobar
Could Great Wall of Iron become New Silk Roadblock?
Olivia Alperstein
Trump Could Start a Nuclear War, Right Now
David Macaray
Norwegians Are the Happiest People on Earth
March 20, 2017
Michael Schwalbe
Tears of Solidarity
Patrick Cockburn
Brexit, Nationalism and the Damage Done
Peter Stone Brown
Chuck Berry: the First Poet of Rock and Roll
Paul J. Ramsey
What Trump’s Travel Ban Reveals About His Long-Term Educational Policy
Norman Pollack
Two Nations: Skid Rows vs. Mar-a-Lago
Michael Brenner
The Great Game: Power Politics or Free Play?
Sam Gordon
Falling Rate of Profit, What about Some Alienation?
Jack Random
Sidetracked: Trump Diaries, Week 8
Julian Vigo
The Limits of Citizenship
James Graham
French Elections: a Guide for the Perplexed
Jeff Mackler
The Extraordinary Lynne Stewart
Lee Ballinger
Chuck Berry: “Up in the Morning and Off to School!”
Binoy Kampmark
Romancing Coal: The Adani Obsession
Nyla Ali Khan
Cultural Syncretism in Kashmir
Chad Nelson
The Politics of Animal Liberation: I Can’t Quit You Gary Francione
Weekend Edition
March 17, 2017
Friday - Sunday
John Reynolds
Israel and the A-Word
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail