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Mexico: ancient civilizations and Latin culture

Mexico (Estados Unidos Mexicanos) is a presidential federal republic consisting of 31 states and 1 federal district. The capital of the country is the famous Mexico City. The country is bathed in the west by the Pacific Ocean and in the east by the Gulf of Mexico and the Antilles Sea. While bordered to the north with the United States of America, and to the southeast with Guatemala and Belize.

The remote islands of Isla Guadalupe and Islas Revillagigedo in the Pacific Ocean are also part of the Mexican state. The capital, Mexico City, is one of the most populous metropolises on Earth. Other important cities are Guadalajara, Monterrey, Ciudad Juárez, Tijuana, Toluca, Mexicali, Mérida, Acapulco de Juárez, Mazatlán, Hermosillo, Chihuahua, Villahermosa, Puebla and León.

The Mexican coasts develop for a total of 9,000 km. Along the Gulf of Mexico they are usually low and sandy with frequent lagoons. While along the Pacific Ocean and in particular in the Baja California peninsula the coasts are high and rocky.

MOUNTAINS AND VOLCANOES

The Mexican territory is crossed from north to south by two mountain ranges the Sierra Madre Oriental (highest peak Cerro San Rafael 3,700 meters) and Sierra Madre Occidental (highest peak Cerro Gordo 3,340 meters). These chains are the continuation of the North American Rockies. They enclose the vast Mexican Plateau (Altiplanicie Mexicana). A plateau, on average 1,100 meters high in the north and 2,000 meters in its southern part, which covers more than half of the total area of the country. The extreme north-western part of the country is occupied by the arid Sonora desert, and the semi-arid peninsula of Baja California.

In the center of the country is the volcanic chain of Volcanica Cordillera, which with its major volcanoes surrounding the plateaus where are Mexico City, Puebla and Toluca, here rise the highest mountains of the country: Pico de Orizaba or Citlaltépētl (5,636 meters) that is the highest mountain of Mexico, then follow the Popocatépetl (5,426 metres), Iztaccíhuatl (5,230 meters) and Nevado de Toluca (4,680 metres). Further south along the coast of the Pacific Ocean lies the Sierra Madre del Sur, whose highest peak is the Cerro Nube Flan (3,750 metres).

Finally, overlooking the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico is the Yucatán Peninsula. The territory of this peninsula is flat, with low coasts, often bordered by lagoons, and is formed by limestone karst soils, characterized by the absence of superficial watercourses.

The most important river in the country is the Rio Grande (3,034 km in length), which marks the border with the United States of America for a long stretch. From the Central Plateau, the Río Grande de Santiago and the Río Balsas descend towards the Pacific Ocean. The largest Mexican lake is Lake Chapala, located in the Central Plateau.

THE MEXICAN ECONOMY

In first place in the economy of the country are the huge mineral resources. Mexico is the world’s largest producer of silver, and among the first for sulfur. Oil, natural gas and coal resources are also important sources of energy. Then iron, fluorite, phosphates, uranium, gold, tin, copper, lead, zinc, antimony, graphite, manganese, barite and tungsten are extracted.

The country’s agricultural lands produce cereals (corn, wheat, barley, sorghum and rice), legumes (dried beans, chickpeas), tomatoes, potatoes, cotton, coffee, tobacco, sugar cane, cocoa, fruit (oranges, tangerines, lemons, grapefruits, bananas, apples, pineapples), and agave fourcroydes (from which henequén, a traditional Mexican alcoholic drink) is obtained. Important the breeding especially of cattle and pigs.

Forest resources are noteworthy and fishing is important (crustaceans, sardines, anchovies, tuna, anchovies, oysters and mackerel). From an industrial point of view, Mexico is one of the most developed countries in Latin America. Its industry is based on the mechanical, electronic, textile, food, iron and steel, chemical and petrochemical sectors. Tourism is very important.

The climate of Mexico.

  • Area: 1,972,547 sqkm. (Arable 12,6%, Pastures 38%, Forests and Woodlands 24,9%, Uncultivated and Unproductive 24,5%)
  • Population: 128,700,000 (2020 data) (Mestizos (descendants of European and Amerindian) 60%-75%, Amerindian 12%-30%, European 12%-15%).
  • State Capital: Mexico City.
  • Language: Spanish
  • Religion: Christian 95% (Roman Catholic 90%; Protestant 6%).
  • Currency: Peso (MXN)
  • Time: UTC -6 to -8 hours.

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