Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has unveiled a new plan to curtail illegal immigration to the United States by focusing on creating economic “free zones” along the U.S.-Mexico border.
López Obrador, a leftist, announced the Tax Incentive Decree for the Northern Border Region which will create free zones near the border that are over 15 miles wide and will reportedly encompass approximately 2,000 miles. The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that the free zones will:
- reduce income taxes from 30 percent to 20 percent
- slash the Value Added Tax for goods coming into the country from 16 percent to 8 percent
- boost the minimum wage 100 percent to 176 pesos ($8.80), and
- make fuel prices the same as those in the the U.S.
“It’s going to be the biggest free zone in the world,” Lopez Obrador said. “It is very important to project for winning investment, creating jobs and taking advantage of the economic strength of the United States.”
“Proponents of the president’s ‘free zone’ plan believe it would reduce the incentive for Mexicans to migrate to the U.S. and increase competition among local businesses,” Fox News reported. “But others fear that Mexican companies, attracted by low taxes, might move to the free zone and create an overall loss of tax revenue for the country as a whole.”
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