Mexico, the United Mexican States (Estados Unidos Mexicanos), is bordered on the north by the United States of America; on the south by Belize and Guatemala; on the east by the United States of America, Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the west by the Pacific Ocean.
Mexico’s borders stretch approximately 1,958,201 square kilometers or 756,066 square miles. That figure includes 5,363 square kilometers or 2,071 square miles of outlying islands. From north to south its longest distance is 1,250 miles. From east to west its longest distance is 1,900 miles. Mexico’s coast line covers about 6,320 miles.
Most of Mexico is just an immense elevated plateau, flanked by mountain ranges that fall sharply off to narrow coastal plains in the West and East. Much of Mexico’s Central Plateau is a continuation of the great plains through the southwestern United States. The highest point in all of Mexico is Mount Onzaba (Citlaltepetl). It is 18,707 feet above sea level. Mexico’s lowest point is near Mexicali. This area near Mexicali is thirty-three feet below sea level.
The capital of Mexico is Mexico City. The metropolitan area of Mexico City is home to about 14,987,051 people of Mexico’s total population of about 93,670,000, according to a 1990 census. Although most of Mexico’s population is from Mexico City, which is the biggest city in the world, Mexico’s other cities include Guadalajara, Monterrey, and Puebla. Most of Mexico’s population lives in urban areas, about seventy-five percent, and the population density is about forty-eight people per square kilometer, or one-hundred and twenty-four people per square mile.
Mexico’s official language is Spanish, although another language that is fairly widely spoken is Native American. Mexico’s ethnic groups can be broken down into three major groups: Mestizo, Native American, and European. Mestizo’s are people of mixed European and Native American ancestry. Mestizo’s make up about sixty percent of Mexico’s population, while Native American’s makes up about thirty percent, and European’s make up about nine percent. There are many religions being practiced in Mexico, but the biggest by far is Roman Catholicism, which is practiced by about ninety percent of Mexico’s population. The other fairly big religion, while nowhere near as widely practiced, is Protestantism, practiced by about five percent of all people currently going to church in Mexico.
Most of Mexico’s big Cities lies within the Tropic of Cancer. Mexico City averages about fifty-four degrees Fahrenheit and twelve degrees Celsius in January, and it averages about sixty-three degrees Fahrenheit and seventeen degrees Celsius in July. Monterrey, which is above the Tropic of Cancer, averages about fifty-eight degrees Fahrenheit and fourteen degrees Celsius in January, and averages eighty-one degrees Fahrenheit and twenty-seven degrees Celsius in July. The average precipitation in Mexico City is seven-hundred and fifty millimeters per year and in Monterrey it is five-hundred and eighty millimeters per year.
Mexico’s form of government is a Federal Government. The head of State and Government is a president who is elected by voters to a six year term. They have a Bicameral Legislature, which consists of a Federal Chamber of Deputies with five-hundred deputies, and a Senate with sixty-four senators. There are three branches of the military in Mexico: the Army, Navy, and the Air Force. There are approximately 175,000 people currently serving the armed forces. In order to serve in the armed forces there you have to be eighteen years or older, and if you are eighteen or older, you may be conscripted to twelve months of part-time service.
In Mexico there are four major universities. There is the National Autonomous University of Mexico, in Mexico City; the University of Guadalajara, in, where else but, Guadalajara; the Benemerita Autonomous University of Puebla, in Puebla; and the Institute of Technical and Advanced Studies of Monterrey, in Monterrey.
An estimation in 1994 predicted that Mexico’s gross national product was about $375,500,000,000. Mexico’s form of currency is the nuevo peso, but seven and forty-five hundredths exchanges for only one United States of America dollar. Mexico makes most of its money by trading it’s major exports, crude petroleum, petroleum products, coffee, silver, internal combustion engines, motor vehicles, cotton, and electronics, with their major trading partners, the U.S., Japan, Germany, Spain, France, Canada, and Brazil. From these and other countries, Mexico’s major imports are