Lithium in the Electricity Reform / Article 33 to Be Removed?By Paloma Duran | Thu, 09/23/2021 - 11:42
Will lithium be added to the electricity reform? President Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced that he is analyzing the possibility of including the issue of lithium in the electricity reform, which he plans to present this week. “The next initiative will be presented this week. We are analyzing whether to include the lithium issue or to do it separately. Currently, we are reviewing what possibilities there are to carry out the nationalization of this resource. There are some companies already working with lithium but we are not looking at expropriation.”
The reform proposed by López Obrador seeks to strengthen the state-owned CFE against private companies. However, he has been criticized for not allowing free competition. Mexico ranks ninth in the world among countries with the largest lithium reserves, with 1.7 million tons. The country is expected to benefit from lithium demand; however, its reserves are located in hard-to-extract clay deposits, which makes its production expensive and unprofitable.
Mexico's request to lift the US blockade of Cuba has not increased tensions between the two nations. López Obrador said that tensions have not increased with the US, after the Mexican government sent a request to the US government to lift its blockade of Cuba. In addition, López Obrador said that several nations and social activists have applauded Mexico’s action. “We have very good relations with all the countries. Our relationships are based on respect and that policy will be upheld. Mexico is synonymous with friendship so we are not going to confront any government.”
López Obrador has repeatedly called on the US to lift the trade embargo on Cuba that has lasted almost 60 years. López Obrador said the US must leave behind the tensions and understand that the embargo has a great impact on the country and on the lives of its inhabitants. "No state should have the right to subjugate another country," he said.
Article 33 could be removed from the Constitution. López Obrador announced that he is considering eliminating Article 33 of the Constitution, which allows the president to expel foreign people from the national territory, saying it has been used for repression and that times have changed. “It is an article that was added to the Constitution of 1857; now, our country lives another reality. We must analyze the possibility of eliminating or reforming it because it does not help us because we do not want to censor anyone. Rather, we want to guarantee full freedoms.”
Recently, López Obrador announced that he has instructed the Ministries of the Interior and Foreign Relations to begin preparing a proposal to eliminate Article 33, considering that it can be used as a “weapon of dictatorship.” In addition, he has requested a study of past expulsions of foreigners so that they can re-enter the country.
Mexicans trust the armed forces. López Obrador applauded the Ministries of National Defense, Navy and National Guard as highly reliable institutions, according to a survey from INEGI. "It is very encouraging that people trust our armed forces. The Navy is the institution that people trust the most, followed by the Army and the National Guard. There has been criticism that the resources of the National Guard are going to be increased. However, this increase is important to have a presence in all regions of the country and improve security."
According to the National Survey of Victimization and Perception of Public Security of INEGI, conducted from March to April, 90.2 percent of the adult population considered the elements of the Navy as the more reliable, followed by the Army with 87.8 percent, and the National Guard, which had 82.7 percent confidence.
Click HERE for full transcript in Spanish