4th of June, 2013.

Large and terrifying whales displacing water, dramatic waves being undertaken by sail ships, children swimming in the ocean among sea horses and mermaids, sailors and divers fishing or confronting many dangers.

That is not my imagination. That is what I have seen that children have drawn for the contest of Child and Sea, organized by the government of Mexico for more than thirty five years. In 2012, the Marine Secretary received more than 2,500 drawings, all testimony of how much the sea is part of our culture.

Ladies and gentlemen, Mexico is a vast country. 17 of our States have access to the sea and we have almost three million square kilometers of Exclusive Economic Zone which is one and a half times our land territory. With 11,500 kilometers of littorals, we have legendary beaches and twenty first century ports to compete in global trade. Mexico’s economy is going strong, and industries such as the oil and gas sector have a large participation in the wellbeing of our people.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear Friends,

We are here to celebrate the Mexican Marine Day. The 1st of June was declared as such by President General Manuel Avila Camacho in 1942, in recognition of the tireless work of all the men and women involved in Marine disciplines.

The Mexican Marine Day is also a good day to remind ourselves of the maritime potential of Mexico. Our government is committed to the development of strategic ports as well as with the strengthening and modernization of the naval industries. Preconditions are not everything but everything can become nothing without them. And a precondition to a strong and competitive maritime sector is security at sea.

In that sense, the Navy is recognized by the Mexican people as one of the most effective institutions of the State to maintain peace and security and to protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of our country. Vice Admiral José Carreño, captains, ladies and gentlemen, many regions in Mexico are safer because of the presence and sustained labor of the Navy. The Government of Mexico wishes to recognize your loyalty and determination to work towards a safer environment for our people.

Our country, Mexico, would also like to express its gratitude to those men and women of the Navy who have perished at sea, at the service of our country.

I am grateful to be the Ambassador of Mexico to the US and to participate in that capacity in this very honorable celebration of the Mexican Marine Day. I remember with great sentiment the eight times I have been at the Naval School in Veracruz, and particularly the two times I was able to be there on the 1st of June.

The President of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto, recognizes the service offered by those men and women of the Navy who protect our territory and our sovereignty, and who through their participation in the merchant, fishing, oil and tourism fleets contribute to our economic development.

I thank all of you for joining us today in this celebration.

Thank you.

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