Carlos Slim to invest almost $4.7 billion in Mexico in 2012

MEXICO CITY: Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim’s Carso Group will invest almost $4.7 billion in Mexico in 2012, including more than half in the telecoms sector, according to a company statement Tuesday.

“During 2012, our investments in Mexico will be $4.66 billion, generating more than 100,000 jobs,” according to the conglomerate including telecoms, construction, entertainment and health companies.

Investments in telecoms included the construction of 18,600 miles (29,930 kilometers) of fiber optic cables, adding to an existing 76,000 miles (122,310 kilometers).

Among the building projects were the continued construction of a water treatment factory in Atotonilco, in Hidalgo state, north of Mexico City, set to treat 60 percent of residual water from the Valley of Mexico, which includes the capital.

Carlos Slim is considered the world’s richest man, with a fortune estimated at $74 billion last year by Forbes magazine.

Slim, who is of Lebanese origin, earned his wealth building up the telephone monopoly Telmex after acquiring it from the Mexican government in 1990.

Telmex and cell phone company Telcel, also the country’s largest, are currently fighting disputes with Mexican cable and telephone companies seeking more access to their telephone infrastructure, as Slim seeks to move into television.