President-elect Enrique Peña Nieto said in an address to political and business leaders that he planned to focus on reducing the poverty that afflicts 52 million Mexicans and to boost gross domestic product growth, which has averaged 2.4 percent annually over the past three decades.

The president-elect told the approximately 300 movers and shakers from the worlds of business and politics who attended the annual Lideres Mexicanos magazine dinner on Monday that he was aiming to produce positive results.

The 46-year-old Peña Nieto, who will take office on Dec. 1, said his administration would aim to create 1 million jobs annually and restore Mexico's status as a world leader.

Existing social assistance programs that only "give money away" will be changed, with new policies being implemented to help families get involved in productive activities, Peña Nieto said.

Tax, energy, labor and security reforms will be implemented to boost economic growth, the president-elect said.

The economy has tremendous growth opportunities and Mexico is part of the MIST (Mexico, Indonesia, South Korea and Turkey) group, which is similar to the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) group of fast-growing emerging economies, Peña Nieto said, citing analysts.

"Mexico has a great opportunity to project itself in the world and gain the confidence of capital to promote its economic growth," Peña Nieto said.

Mexico's relationship with the United States should not be centered on fighting drug trafficking and should instead be a more productive one, with the same focus being placed on relations with Central and South America, the president-elect said.

The right to an education should be about more than just attending school, with teachers and parents working to help students receive a quality education, Peña Nieto said, making the slogan his own.

"A president does not have friends. His only interest is in moving the republic forward," the president-elect said, adding that he would follow that standard.

A leader must have the ability to rally society and transform the country, Peña Nieto said.

The incoming administration will be democratic, but the president will take responsibility for the decisions made, Peña Nieto said.

Peña Nieto belongs to the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, which governed Mexico for seven decades and has been out of power since 2000. EFE