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    Hispanic Retail 360: Vicente Fox Headlines This Year's Record-Setting Conference

    Former president of Mexico discusses leadership and government, as more than 600 attendees gather to share strategies, tactics and data on the Latino market.

    LA JOLLA, Calif. -- Former president of Mexico, Vicente Fox, gave a wide-ranging address touching on leadership, government, politics and partnerships as the keynote speaker of the 2011 Hispanic Retail 360 Summit, held here.

    Calling for an expansion of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) to keep North America competitive with the rising economies of Asia, Fox said, "We need a new NAFTA vision because no single nation by itself can succeed and be competitive while the rest of the world is forming blocks."

    As the former president of Mexico from 2000 to 2006, Fox said Canada, the United States and Mexico must be aware of this current shift of markets, financial resources and political power from the west to the east.

    Fox, who worked in the private sector as a businessman as well as the political sector, didn't avoid controversy either, repeating a call that legalizing drugs would end the drug war along the U.S.-Mexico border. "Prohibition doesn't work," he said.

    Something else that doesn't work is walls. "I don't understand why this great country, which I love, why it decided to build walls. Walls divide, walls isolate and walls don't work. The Berlin Wall could not hold out freedom and the China Wall could not stop foreign invaders."

    "Migration is the greatest asset the (U.S.) nation has. Migration has been the strength, power and energy that have made the country so successful," he added.

    A record audience of 605 retailers, suppliers, agencies and service providers participated in area store tours, nine general sessions and 16 concurrent sessions, as well as four smaller working groups at the seventh annual Hispanic Retail 360 Summit, hosted by Stagnito Media and sponsored by PepsiCo.

    Stagnito Media is a leading food industry media firm and publisher of Progressive Grocer and Convenience Store News, among other brands.

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