In a bid to contain rising prices in the face of mounting street anger, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has set out a plan to help struggling families.
Flanked by his cabinet and business leaders he has vowed to keep prices of essential goods stable, to cut salaries of senior government officials and to encourage capital repatriation.
“Be confident that we will do all that is necessary so that the adjustment in petrol prices will have the least possible impact on family finances. Today Mexico has a strong, dynamic and competitive economy.”
It has been a 20 percent hike in the price of petrol which has angered Mexicans the most. The government’s decision to cut fuel subsidies from January 1 has sparked widespread and often violent protests.
Demonstrators have blocked roads and gas stations, and looting of shops has led to hundreds of arrests.
The rise in petrol prices is part of a government liberalisation programme aimed at gradually bringing prices up to market level. Some analysts are already expecting inflation to crest above the central bank’s four percent ceiling.
Along with inflation Mexico is also facing a slump in foreign investment following Donald Trump’s economic threats.