Peacefulness in Mexico improved by 0.2 percent in 2021. Despite the relatively minor change in score, this represents the second year in a row of improvement following four consecutive years of deteriorations.

Of the five MPI indicators, three – homicide, firearms crime and detention without a sentence – improved in 2021, while two – violent crime and organized crime – deteriorated. The homicide rate fell by 4.3 percent and the firearms crime rate by 6.2 percent, marking the second consecutive year of improvement for both indicators. This is significant given that these two categories of crime have driven Mexico’s overall deterioration in peacefulness since 2015.

Here’s a look at the states with largest improvements in peacefulness.


Mexico states with largest improvements in peacefulness in 2022

Twenty-three Mexican states experienced improvements in peacefulness in 2021, while nine experienced deteriorations. This is the second year in a row that most states improved, following four consecutive years in which the majority deteriorated.

The largest improvements occurred in Mexico’s least peaceful states. The two states recording the biggest gains – Colima and Chihuahua – are among the country’s most violent, and all of the most improved states fall outside the top ten most peaceful states in Mexico.

In keeping with national trends, four of the five most improved states – Colima, Chihuahua, Tabasco and Sinaloa – experienced reductions in their homicide and firearms crime rates. The only state not to experience such improvements was San Luis Potosí, though its homicide and firearms crime rates remained virtually unchanged from the previous year.


In 2021, Colima had the largest improvement in peacefulness in Mexico, moving up one place to 30th in the rankings. This improvement follows five consecutive years of deteriorations. Colima’s overall improvement was driven primarily by reductions in its homicide and firearms crime scores.



Chihuahua had the second largest improvement in Mexico in 2021. It improved in four of the five MPI indicators, except for violent crime, and the improvement in its organized crime rate was the country’s second largest.


The state of Tabasco registered the third largest improvement in peacefulness in Mexico in 2021, marking its third consecutive year of improvement. Tabasco improved in every indicator except for detention without a sentence.



San Luis Potosí 

San Luis Potosí had the fourth largest improvement in Mexico in 2021, a change in trend after five consecutive years of deteriorations. This improvement was driven almost entirely by reductions in organized crime, as its other crime indicators either deteriorated or remained virtually unchanged.



Sinaloa recorded the fifth largest improvement in Mexico in 2021, marking its fourth consecutive year of improved peacefulness. The state experienced improvements in its firearms crime, homicide and detention without a sentence rates. The most significant improvements occurred in the homicide and firearms crime indicators, with rates falling by 20.9 and 25.2 %, respectively.

While the vast majority of states improved in peacefulness in 2021, the national score experienced only a marginal improvement. This reflects the degree to which violence in a minority of states is driving elevated levels of violence in Mexico.

The Mexico Peace Index (MPI) provides a comprehensive measure of peacefulness in Mexico, including trends, analysis and estimates of the economic impact of violence on the country. The MPI is based on the Global Peace Index, the world’s leading measure of global peacefulness, produced by Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) every year since 2007.

ENG MPI 2022 Cover Art

Download the 2022 Mexico Peace Index Report