Mexico proposes sweeping social program changes

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Associated Press

Posted on September 9, 2013 at 12:02 AM

Updated Monday, Sep 9 at 2:03 AM

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto is proposing sweeping changes to the country's social programs, with a plan to implement the country's first nationwide pensions, unemployment insurance and capital-gains taxes.

Pena Nieto's plan had originally been billed as a tax system reform, and it would cut most of the industry-specific tax loopholes written into Mexico's tax codes over decades.

But in his announcement Sunday, Pena Nieto went much further by proposing Mexico's first carbon tax and the first levy on soft drinks, which he said is needed to combat the country's high rate of obesity.

The proposals must be approved by both houses of congress and a majority of state legislatures, because they involve constitutional changes.

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