Sunday, February 25, 2024

Economy Minister Tatiana Clouthier resigns

Economy Minister Tatiana Clouthier has resigned less than two years after taking on the job, telling President López Obrador in a letter that her time to step down had come.

Clouthier, who succeeded Graciela Márquez as economy minister in January 2021, read her resignation letter at the president’s regular news conference on Thursday.

“Dear president, I’d like to take the opportunity with this note to thank you for the great opportunity you’ve given me to walk with you in favor of the fourth transformation,” she said, referring to the profound change López Obrador says he is implementing in Mexico.

“If I can make a comparison with baseball, I was invited to play in the major league, to get to know the country, represent it, play in different positions, sweating profusely in my shirt and never ceasing to do my part in order to score a run for Mexico.”

Clouthier, who managed López Obrador’s 2018 presidential campaign, said that, “as in the game,” one needs to know when it is  time to step away. She didn’t cite a specific reason for her resignation, simply saying that her “opportunity to be on the team is over.”

Clouthier – a former federal deputy who was affiliated with the National Action Party for over two decades before joining López Obrador’s Morena party – noted that she had discussed her decision with the president in July and September and said she would now join the porra, or fans of the government and enthusiastically follow her erstwhile “team” while continuing to work for the country as an ordinary citizen.

“I would like to say more but the only thing that comes out of my mouth and heart is thank you,” said the visibly upset outgoing minister.

“Thank you … for allowing me to put my abilities at the service of the country and above all for showing me that when it comes to serving [the people of Mexico] there is no weariness, sickness or barrier that can’t be overcome.”

In addition to the ongoing energy disputes, Tatiana Clouthier’s brother, politician Manuel Clouthier, speculated that recent issues related to the National Guard may have influenced her departure, though he acknowledge he had not discussed the issue with his sister.

Clouthier’s departure comes as the federal government continues to conduct dispute resolution talks with the United States and Canada over concerns about Mexico’s nationalistic energy policies. As economy minister she played a key role in trade talks and in maintaining positive government relations with Mexican business and industry.

Foreign Affairs Minister Marcelo Ebrard said that her resignation wouldn’t affect the energy talks with the U.S. and Canada, which have been “productive,” according to the Economy Ministry.

López Obrador said he respected Clouthier’s decision to resign but nevertheless attempted to change her mind. “We insisted that she stay but she’s a woman with convictions … and she’s taken this decision to leave the Economy Ministry,” he said.

“… We’re going to feel her absence but … she’s always going to continue … defending justice and promoting the democratic political development of our country.”

Asked later in his press conference whether Clothier disagreed with the militarization of Mexico during the current government, López Obrador said that wasn’t the case and that the minister was leaving “on the best terms.”

He said Clouthier’s replacement will be announced Friday. The news agency Reuters reported that a person familiar with López Obrador’s thinking said that Raquel Buenrostro, head of the federal tax agency SAT, was being lined up for the job.

With reports from Reforma 

An Indigenous woman in San Cristóbal de las Casas

The week in photos from Mexico: Mexicali to San Cristóbal de las Casas

Take a visual tour of the country with this selection of photos highlighting the events of the week in Mexico, from the everyday to the exceptional.
Police stand guard around the scene of a crash, with a damaged car and motorcycle

Guerrero’s warring organized crime groups reported to have reached a truce

The truce comes a week after four Catholic bishops met with cartel leaders in an unsuccessful attempt to negotiate a ceasefire between the two crime groups.

Mexican Navy seizes 672 kilograms of cocaine off Oaxaca coast

A seizure of nearly 700 kilos of cocaine was carried out by the Navy on Thursday in a high-speed drug bust at sea.