Mexico: a regional power or a failed State?

Karol Derwich


Mexico has been perceived as one of the most important countries in Latin America and the

Caribbean region for many years. This opinion has strong foundations. Territory, geographical location, economy, and political influence are the key factors that predestine this country to the role of a regional power. The democratic transition that has taken place in Mexico in last decades and economic cooperation with the United States also allow it to play a role of regional leader. However, Mexico has significant problems that make it difficult for the country to play the role of a real leader. The most important one is the development of narcobusiness. This phenomenon brings not only the growing activity of drug cartels but also the eruption of narcoviolence in Mexico. This gives rise to grave problems for the Mexican authorities. The development of narcobusiness is partially the result of weakness of some of its institutions. For example, police forces do not carry out their tasks and are closely related to the drug cartels. As a result, the Mexican state is incapable of assuring security to its citizens – one of the most important functions of every state. Is it able to control its territory? It definitely does not have a monopoly for the use of violence on its territory. Huge corruption enables different non-state actors to influence decision making processes. All these problems make substantiated theses that the Mexican state is dysfunctional in some areas. Some analysts go much further in their opinions and describe Mexico as a failed state. The aim of the paper is to analyze the present position of Mexico in Latin America and the Caribbean region. Are the contemporary problems so big that they can lead to the collapse of the Mexican state or does Mexico have a real potential to play the role of a local leader and regional power? The author would like to analyze the impact of the present day internal problems in Mexico’s geopolitical position.


Mexico; Failed states; Foreign policy

Texto completo:



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