Mexico's not looking so great right now

Cars drive across Mexico/U.S. border

TEXT OF STORY

Bill Radke: The swine flu outbreak is another cruel blow to Brand Mexico. A country dependent on tourism is trying to overcome a murderous drug trade and now a potential deadly pandemic. From the Americas Desk at WLRN, Marketplace's Dan Grech reports.


Dan Grech: Mexico is desperate to improve its image among foreign travelers. But spinning drug gangs is a piece of cake compared to explaining away an outbreak of swine flu.

Kevin McCauley covers the public relations business for O'DwyerPR.com:

Kevin McCauley: Swine flu is mysterious, it's insidious. It's a very different problem. Hard, almost impossible to deal with.

McCauley says because Mexico so interlocked with the U.S., Mexico faces a bigger challenge than did Asia during the SARS epidemic of 2003.

McCauley: First thing they have to do is to reassure people in United States that the swine flu situation is being aggressively taken care of. And there has to be then a period of six months where there are no more outbreaks. And then we can start talking about travel to Mexico.

Mexico is in the process of hiring a U.S. PR firm to help spread that message.

I'm Dan Grech for Marketplace.

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