MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Tuesday Carlos Slim had told him the billionaire planned to retire during his administration, in a step at odds with the tycoon’s usually discreet approach to public life.
Slim, who for a time was listed by Forbes as the world’s richest man, did not confirm the president’s unexpected announcement, but said through a spokesman that hard work lay ahead for the two of them over the next six years.
Figure - Economy - Slim - Profile - Interviews
Long a dominant figure in the Mexican economy, the 79-year-old Slim typically keeps a low profile, doing only occasional interviews and giving away little about his plans.
Slim was the first question of the day during Lopez Obrador’s regular morning news conference, as a reporter asked if he had met the tycoon and what he thought about his plans.
Business - Life - Growth - Welfare - Government
“He wants to end his business life helping economic growth and public welfare during this government,” Lopez Obrador said, without specifying when he met Slim. “That’s what he offered me. He wants to retire and he wants to do it in this government.”
Arturo Elias, a spokesman and son-in-law of the 79-year-old Slim, posted a brief statement on Twitter after being asked whether the president’s remarks were accurate.
Slim - President - Years - Work - Country
“Slim remarked to the president that the two have almost six years of intense work (ahead) for the country, the president due to his electoral mandate, and (Slim) due to his age,” Elias said.
Vowing to tackle chronic poverty and inequality in Mexico, Lopez Obrador has put government welfare spending at the heart of his plans to redistribute wealth.
Economists - Handouts - Business - Leaders - Promotion
While some economists have questioned how effective handouts will be, business leaders have publicly backed the promotion of “bienestar” or “welfare” as an instrument of policy, and pledged to support the president economically.
Day-to-day management of Slim’s business empire, which ranges from...
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