St. Mary's Law Journal


The New Agrarian Law was passed based on a Mexican consensus demanding a better way of life for millions of farmers. Because of low agricultural productivity by the ejido—land common to all the neighbors—and the difficulties for the ejidatarios—members of the ejido—to obtain credit, an armed insurrection resulted. Mexico was forced to find a solution by trying to redistribute the agrarian lands equitably through agrarian reform. Unlike prior amendments which proved inefficient, the New Agrarian Law is applicable to companies and to ejidos. The New Agrarian Law will permit higher productivity in the Mexican agricultural sector and will increase the welfare of peasants. The New Law also grants ejidatarios greater freedom to decide what the land will be used for, permitting them to execute any type of agreement for the association, benefit, or use of the land. The New Agrarian Law permits ownership of land by companies and allows stock companies to own agriculture, livestock, or forestry land in extensions not larger than twenty-five times the factor of individual landholdings. Furthermore, under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Mexico has opportunities for the economic and social development of the rural Mexican countryside. With the new modifications to Mexican agrarian legislation, stock companies will invest in the agrarian sector for the first time, and foreign investment and associations will contribute to rural development, mechanization, and the quality of products. Additionally, the amendments regarding ejidos will allow Mexico to compete internationally while increasing the welfare of its citizens.


St. Mary's University School of Law