UPDATE 1-Mexico sees $300 bln in infrastructure spending through 2018
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MEXICO CITY, July 15 (Reuters) - Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said on Monday he expects to see 4 trillion pesos ($300 billion) in spending on major infrastructure projects aimed at beefing up the country during his six-year term.
Pena Nieto said at an event in Mexico City that public and private investments in transportation and communications infrastructure would reach nearly a third of that total, with an expected $1.3 trillion pesos ($100 billion) of spending between 2013 and 2018.
The spending will go into new highways, rail lines and telecommunications infrastructure, as well as port upgrades that will help improve logistics for the country's exporters.
Mexico's economy has suffered due to spotty and uneven infrastructure development.
"The level of infrastructure that we have in the country is incongruent with our level of competitiveness," Pena Nieto said of Mexico, Latin America's second-largest economy.
The president said 582 billion pesos would go to transportation-related projects while 700 billion pesos would go toward telecommunications.
Earlier this year, Congress approved a reform of the country's telecom rules aimed at opening up the sector to greater competition and allowing more foreign investment.
Including investments by state-run energy and water companies, infrastructure spending during his six-year term could reach 4 trillion pesos, Pena Nieto said, but he did not detail plans for energy sector spending on Monday.
($1 = 12.7325 Mexican pesos)
(Reporting by Liz Diaz)