This part introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters. The part sets out, perhaps by way of explaining the pre-1982 profligacy, that both Mexico and its creditors, particularly the private banks, projected the continuation of the oil bonanza. It examines the need for encouraging Mexican producers to face international competition through the removal of trade barriers and to face increased internal competition through domestic deregulation. The part is concerned about Mexico’s trade relations with the United States, which has historically bypassed the multilateral institutions such as the GATT and taken the bilateral approach at its own choosing. While there can be no doubt about the fact that the Mexican economy has been put through a wringer between 1982 and 1988, it is important to recall that domestic policies pursued prior to 1982 are the major contributory causes of the crisis.