Despite a much-publicized war against cartels, the real Mexico story is one of moderately good economic growth with zero net illegal emigration and a public sector financed by a budget showing a $1 billion annual surplus.
But then there's Pemex, the supposed symbol of national sovereignty, which in reality is nothing but a millstone around Mexico's neck holding the country back from far greater gains.
Pemex's many costs and debts are among the reasons why that $1 billion annual surplus is not $6 billion. It's also a big reason Mexico has $59 billion in debt. Its unionized 150,000-strong workforce is one of the least efficient, yielding an average of $506,000 of revenue per employee per year, far below the $2.865 million each employee at the top five international oil companies brings in, according to a Baker Institute study.