Aviso LatAm: September 17, 2022

​​​​​What you should know

  • US-Mexico relations: The second High-Level Economic Dialogue between the two countries met on Monday, after it was relaunched last year. More information below.
  • Chile: On September 4, citizens rejected a proposed constitution which would have significantly altered its social and economic landscape. 
  • SME: Our latest publication, Unlocking Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise Potential in Latin America and the Caribbean outlines practical, forward-looking policy recommendations needed for SMEs to fully become engines of socioeconomic prosperity.
  • UNGA 77: As leaders from 193 member states address pressing challenges, fortifying recovery against global shocks should be among top priorities. Next Monday, September 19 at 12:00 ET, tune in to our special event featuring the European Commission’s Vice President Josep Borrell, Spanish Foreign Minister José Manuel Albares, US Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and Environment Jose W. Fernandez, Guyanese Foreign Secretary Robert M. Persaud, and more.

Monitoring economic headwinds and tailwinds in the region

  • El Salvador: One year after adopting Bitcoin as legal tender at market highs, the crypto currency has lost over half its value.
  • Colombia: The state oil company, Ecopetrol, asked regulators to temporarily halt fracking projects. President Petro promised to end fracking and is making a fourth legislative attempt to do so.  
  • Brazil: Growth in services and industry led the country to exceed its second-quarter forecast by a third, with GDP growing at 1.2 percent
  • Belize: The government will host a technical mission from Taiwan to support the sustainable development of Belize’s blue economy including fishery resources.
  • Barbados: The government hosted the inaugural Africa-Caribbean trade and investment forum on September 1, in a determined effort to formalize trade, air, tourism, and other links between the two.
  • Argentina: “Superminister” Massa received a $1.2 billion loan proposal from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) as he visited Washington to meet with lenders. Inflation is expected to reach 95 percent this year. 

In focus: US-Mexico High-Level Economic Dialogue

US officials, including Secretary of State Blinken and Secretary of Commerce Raimondo, met with their Mexican counterparts Secretary of Foreign Relations Ebrard and Secretary of Economy Clouthier, in Mexico City on September 13. Conversations focused on continental integration, strengthening supply chains, and economic opportunities between the US, Mexico, and northern Central America. The delegations paid special attention to electric vehicle production, information technology, and improving border infrastructure. 

Notably absent from the main discussion points was the ongoing dispute over Mexico’s energy policy, which the US and Canada raised through USMCA in July. While both the US and Mexico signaled optimism after the meeting, no official advances have been announced. The parties have until October 3 to reach an agreement before a formal panel is convened to evaluate the dispute.  

Health + Innovation

  • Monkeypox: 16 percent of more than 50,000 confirmed cases worldwide were registered in Latin America the first week of September.
  • World Health Organization: As the number of reported deaths from COVID-19 hit an all-time low globally since March 2020, the head of the organization said that the end of the pandemic is now in sight.
  • Jamaica: The government hosted a three-day Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) conference to share research and insights into the COVID-19 pandemic.

Geopolitics of vaccine donations: US vs. China

  • The United States outpaces China in its donations of COVID-19 vaccines to Latin America and the Caribbean, with Colombia and Mexico topping the list. The region has received roughly 52 percent of all US COVID-19 vaccine donations. To learn more, visit our COVID-19 vaccine tracker: Latin America and the Caribbean.