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March 18, 2013updated Mar 19, 2013

Mexico Shoots For the Top

By Chris Boyle

Claudia Ruiz Massieu

Claudia Ruiz Massieu

With the backing of newly elected President of the Republic Enrique Peña Nieto, Tourism Minister Claudia Ruiz Massieu opened her first Tianguis here in Puebla saying her goal is for “Mexico to be a world reference for tourism.”

Speaking at a breakfast and a press conference, she announced that her administration will focus on the following key sectors: luxury, culture, archeology, adventure, and meetings and conventions. The new administration, she said, fully backs a strong focus on tourism citing, “huge potential for investment, employment and social cohesion.”

Ruiz Massieu promised more coordination between local governments, states, the private sector and the federal government to make Mexico more competitive on the world stage.

She noted “tourism brings a community together for the best,” and she pointed to Mazatlan’s efforts which have seen Mexico’s Carnival become the third largest in the world behind Rio de Janeiro and New Orleans. She also praised the creation of a Pacific Riviera joining Nayarit, Sinaloa and Jalisco as endeavors that will heighten her country’s status on the international stage.

For the first time, Mexico’s annual tourism fair was held in a non-beach destination, and she pointed to a record number of buyers – from 42 foreign countries – underscoring the interest in Mexico’s diversity beyond sun and sand.

The Minister said President Pena Nieto has a policy of not making promises unless he could deliver, and she shares that sentiment – she got a laugh when she claimed she would only commit to running a half marathon despite an invitation from the Governor of Sinaloa to participate in Mazatlan’s full marathon.

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