Chicago Tribune
July 16, 2001

Mexico's president calls NAFTA a success

                   Nicole Ziegler Dizon
                   Associated Press Writer

                   The North American Free-Trade Agreement is a success, Mexican President
                   Vicente Fox said this morning during the second day of his visit to Chicago.

                   Fox extolled the virtues of free trade and encouraged investment in Mexico
                   during a breakfast address to the U.S-Mexico Chamber of Commerce. He
                   spoke to more than 1,500 business leaders from Mexico and Illinois.

                   ``The time has come to fully take advantage of the opportunity provided by
                   globalization and NAFTA,'' Fox said.

                   Critics have attacked NAFTA, which took effect in 1994, for a rising trade
                   imbalance between the United States and Mexico.

                   Fox said Mexico is working to guarantee migrant workers security, stability
                   and legal status in the United States.

                   ``Migration is a world phenomenon and is an issue of the 21st century,'' he
                   said. Fox said he is listening and working with President Bush to transform
                   immigration ``from a problem to an opportunity.''

                   However, Fox did not mention amnesty for Mexican workers living illegally in
                   the United States. Bush is considering granting them legal status.

                   Fox's five-day tour of the United States to promote investment in the
                   Mexican economy and a more open U.S.-Mexico border was scheduled to
                   take him to Detroit later today after meetings with Gov. George Ryan and
                   Mayor Richard Daley, and a speech to the Economic Club of Chicago.

                   Sunday, Fox spoke to an enthusiastic crowd of Mexican-American
                   supporters in the heavily Hispanic Pilsen neighborhood. He urged them to
                   invest in Mexico and said Mexican citizens admire their struggles to find a
                   better life in the United States.

                   On Saturday, Fox was a keynote speaker at an information and technology
                   conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, and met with business leaders, including
                   Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates. Tuesday, Fox is scheduled to speak in