Mexico is a nation where affluence, poverty, natural splendour and urban blight rub shoulders.
It has the second-largest economy in Latin America and is a major oil exporter.
But prosperity remains a dream for many Mexicans, and the socio-economic gap remains wide. Rural areas are often neglected and huge shanty towns ring the cities.
Many poor Mexicans have sought to cross the 3,000-km border with the US in search of a job but in recent years more Mexicans immigrants have returned to Mexico than migrated to the US.
Tens of thousands of people have been killed in drugs-related gang violence in the past decade. Powerful cartels control the trafficking of drugs from South America to the US. Security forces ordered to crack down on them have been accused of abusing their power and acting with impunity.
Mexico's media were traditionally dominated by the Televisa group, which had firm links with the long-governing Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI. But the loosening of the PRI's hold led to greater editorial independence and the emergence of competitors.
Televisa once had a virtual monopoly in Mexican TV and it is still a major global supplier of programmes in Spanish. New players - such as the Azteca group and foreign satellite and cable operators - have mounted an assault on Televisa's dominance.
The radio market is very large, with around 1,400 local and regional stations and several major station-owning groups. Some high-powered stations on Mexico's northern border beam into lucrative US markets.
Mexican newspapers reflect different political views; sensationalism characterises the biggest-selling dailies.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) describes Mexico as "one of the hemisphere's most dangerous countries" for the media. Since 2000, scores of journalists have been murdered. "Drug cartels and corrupt officials are implicated in most of the crimes of violence against journalists, which almost always go unpunished," says the watchdog.
Mexico is one of Latin America's biggest internet markets. There were 51 million internet users by mid-2015 - a 41% penetration rate (InternetLiveStats.com). Facebook is the most popular social network.
For more media information contact Yvonne Foster: