Mexico is a Spanish-speaking country situated in North America. It lies south of the United States, and is bounded by Guatemala and the Caribbean Sea to the southeast, by the Pacific Ocean to the west and south, while the Gulf of Mexico lies to its east.
North America is the third largest continent, as only Africa and Asia supersede it in size. The biggest countries on the continent are the United States of America, Canada, and Mexico, which are the countries that make up the North America Free Trade Association (NAFTA). At the same time, these three nations are also the richest and most heavily industrialized in the continent. However, due to their smaller populations, several small Caribbean countries have a larger GDP per capita than Mexico. Some of the biggest and most important cities in North America include Toronto, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington DC, Toronto, Ottawa, Kingston, and Mexico City.
Mexico is the eleventh most populous country in the world. At the same time, it is the most populous among Spanish-speaking countries. While Mexico City is the country's capital city, Mexico has numerous other metropolitan cities, including Guadalajara, Toluca, Monterrey, Leon, Tijuana and Puebla. The country dates back to 8,00 BCE, and was home to many civilizations, such as the Aztecs and Mayans. The country gained independence from Spain in 1821, and Agustin de Iturbide served as the first emperor. In 1824, a republic was established, and Guadalupe Victoria became the country's first president. The current president of Mexico is Enrique Peňa Nieto.
Mexico is the fourteenth largest country in the world. It shares a 1900 mile border with the USA, a 500 mile border with Guatemala, and a 150 mile border with Belize. The highest point in Mexico is Pico de Orizaba (5700 meters), which is part of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. Many parts of the country are arid with sporadic rainfall, especially in the north, while the tropical lowlands in the south experience around 2000 mm of rain annually. According to a 2002 study, Mexico had the second highest rate of deforestation in the world, beaten only by Brazil.
Population and Culture
According to a 2017 estimate, Mexico has a population of 123.5 million people. A census conducted two years earlier in 2015, established the youthful makeup of the country, as 53.1% of Mexicans were less than 30 years old. Given the efforts of the Mexican government to unify all Mexicans under the single ethnic identity, called 'Mestizo’, there exists little data about the ethnic makeup within the country. However, there are Mexicans of European descent, Arab descent (particularly Lebanese), Afro-Mexicans, and several indigenous peoples, such as Maya, Mixtec, Zapotec, and Nahua peoples. Almost all Mexicans speak Spanish, although 5.4% of the population speak an indigenous language in addition to Spanish. The main religion in the country is Roman Catholicism, which is practiced by 83% of the population, and 10% subscribe to other Christian denominations. Mexico has the second largest Catholic community in the world. The richest man in the world, Carlos Slim, is a Mexican citizen.