Mexican Gov' Gave Free TVs to Poor, but Defects Wasted Taxpayers’ Money
Mexico’s congressional audit office has ruled that a controversial government program to give away some 10 million flat-screen TV sets to the poor wasted an estimated $39 million of taxpayers’ money, as reported The Wall Street Journal.
The audit found that some 339,000 of the televisions in President Enrique Peña Nieto’s nearly $1-billion program were defective. The subsidy program was aimed at helping the poor during the country’s 2015 switch from analog to digital signals for television.
Contracts for almost two-thirds of the sets went to domestic electronics wholesaler Comercializadora Milenio SA, in partnership with its sister company, domestic television manufacturer Diamond Electronics SA.
Although Mexico is the world’s largest exporter of flat-screen TVs, none of the leading television manufacturers with operations here played a prominent role in the giveaway initiative. Mexico’s largest producer, Samsung, was disqualified for technical reasons, according to government documents.
Read the full article in the WSJ.