Enrique Peña Nieto, President of Mexico, delivered the 21st U Thant Distinguished Lecture at UNU Headquarters in Tokyo on 9 April 2013.
President Peña Nieto’s lecture, entitled “Mexico in the World: An Actor with Global Responsibility”, focused on how Mexico has become an increasingly important international actor over the past years by establishing itself as a country that promotes dialogue and cohesive solutions.
Mexico was elected four times as a non-permanent member of the Security Council, and during its last tenure (2009–2010) played an important role by contributing proactively to strengthening the role of conflict prevention and resolution, and enhancing the promotion and protection of human rights and international humanitarian law, as well as by enhancing the transparency of the Council. Through such efforts, Mexico has earned a legitimacy that enables the country to champion integration efforts in Latin America.
This lecture was part of the U Thant Distinguished Lecture series — a forum through which eminent thinkers and world leaders speak on the challenges facing the world’s peoples and nations in the twenty-first century. The series is organized jointly by UNU and the Science Council of Japan, with the support of the Inter-American Development Bank.
For more information on the series, please visit The U Thant Distinguished Lecture Series section of this website.
For a full review of the 21st U Thant Lecture along with bilingual video/audio, please see the event’s news page.
Profile of Enrique Peña Nieto
Enrique Peña Nieto joined public service at an early age, occupying several positions in the government of the State of Mexico, including Secretary of Administration (2000–2002) and Representative of the 13th District in the 65th Session of the State of Mexico (2003–2004).
In 2005, he was elected to a six-year term as Governor of the State of Mexico (September 2005 – September 2011). As Governor, Peña Nieto achieved significant progress in infrastructure and public services, particularly in health. He restructured finances in the State of Mexico, reducing public debt and increasing expenditure targeting works and programmes, without the need to increase taxes.
In 2011, he announced his plans to run for the Presidency and, after an intense campaign, he was elected President of Mexico on 1 July 2012, and assumed that office on 1 December 2012. He has proclaimed that the main objective of his government will be to ensure that the rights that the Constitution confers on Mexicans move from paper into practice.
President Peña Nieto holds a BA in Law from the Universidad Panamericana and an MA in Business Administration from the Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey.
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