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Dialogue Associates are assured an invitation to our policy exchanges and receive new publications and articles. MORE  


Business leaders participate in events and comment on issues in the Latin America Advisor, a daily brief for Corporate Circle members. MORE

Cuba, United States Unveil Historic Policy Changes

US president Barack Obama and Cuban president Raúl Castro announced Wednesday their intention to re-establish diplomatic relations, severed a half century ago, and take steps to lift restrictions on travel, commerce and the free flow of information.

The Dialogue's daily Latin America Advisor published a Q&A with five experts on what the new US-Cuba policy really means.

"Obama has secured his legacy in Latin America," Michael Shifter, the president of the Inter-American Dialogue wrote from Havana, where he has been meeting with government officials and others this week. "The embargo won't be lifted until Congress acts, and short-term prospects for that are not bright, but Obama's announcement is significant, and more sweeping than many analysts predicted." Shifter said the dire economic situation in Cuba, which has been exacerbated by falling oil prices that has only deepened Venezuela's crisis and is likely to diminish a major source of financial support for Cuba, finally pushed the parties together. "Economic reforms have not been advancing as the government had hoped, and Cubans are seeking to leave the island," Shifter noted.
Since the mid-1980s, the Inter-American Dialogue has sought to encourage political and economic openings in Cuba and find ways to reintegrate Cuba into the inter-American system. In 1991, the Dialogue established a special Task Force to review Cuba’s relations with other Western Hemisphere nations, identify new approaches to Cuba that would foster increased policy cooperation between the US and Latin America, encourage peaceful transition to democratic rule in Cuba, and lead to Cuba’s economic and political reintegration into the inter-American community. A special delegation of Task Force members, headed by Elliot Richardson and including Oscar Arias, traveled to Cuba in 1995 and members and staff have traveled to Cuba many times since then. A Dialogue initiative promoted the use of existing mechanisms for cooperation, such as environmental treaties signed by both governments and international scientific institutions to which both nations belong. The Dialogue’s work on Cuba is rooted in the deeply held commitment to multilateral cooperation, to the peaceful resolution of conflict, and to democratic advance throughout the Americas.

"It is hard to imagine a plausible scenario that reverses the situation without greater engagement by the US," Shifter said. "Obama's announcement will be cheered throughout Latin America -- a region where Cuba's political re-integration into the inter-American community has been overwhelmingly supported and long sought."


Source: Wikipedia Commons

Costa Rica's Economic Outlook

10 December
| Megan Cook
The meeting, which featured Costa Rican Ambassador Román Macaya and World Bank Expert Humberto López analyzed the first six months of the administration of Luis Guillermo Solís and explored the economic outlook for 2015, with a focus on the country's business and investment climate.  MORE
Source: Wikipedia Commons

Citizen Insecurities and Democracy

1 December | Megan Cook
The report is based on interviews with more than 50,000 citizens across 28 countries. Mitchell A. Seligson, founder and senior advisor of LAPOP, joined Zechmeister in presenting the report's results, while Casas Zamora offered opening remarks on the findings.  MORE
Source: Flickr/ Andre Gustavo Stumpf

Brazil's Pending Security Challenges

18 November | Marielle Coutrix
Brazil faces considerable public security challenges, reflected in a high homicide rate, the prevalence of organized crime, and widespread police corruption.  What are the recent trends in violent crime in Brazil? What can be done to improve pacification and policing strategies?  MORE

Beyond Venezuela's Simmering Crisis

12 November | Marielle Coutrix
The breakdown of talks between the government and the opposition Democratic Unity (MUD) Alliance earlier this summer does not bode well and further suggests that reconciliation and growth will be a lengthy and complex process.  MORE
Source: Wikipedia Commons

Brazil's Foreign Policy: Dilma's Choices

10 November | Marielle Coutrix
What changes are needed in Brazil's international trade policies to respond effectively to the country's current economic slump? What are the prospects of the Brazilian and US governments taking the necessary steps to make the bilateral relationship more productive?  MORE

Inter-American Human Rights System

5 November | Marielle Coutrix
The Inter-American human rights system is widely recognized as one of the most valuable parts of the OAS. The forum focused on possible reforms to make the system more effective in defending human rights and advancing democratic principles throughout the Americas.  MORE

Brazil's Presidential Elections

28 October | Marielle Coutrix
What does a second term for Dilma mean for the future of Brazil?  The Atlantic Council's Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center and the Dialogue welcomed experts to discuss what the results signal for the economy, Brazil's position on the global stage, and what to expect in 2015 and beyond. MORE
Source: Wikipedia Commons

Possibilities for Immigration Reform

24 October | Marielle Coutrix
In the likely absence of Congressional action, what decisions and initiatives can be expected from President Obama after the mid-term elections? In what ways has the recent surge in child migrants from Central America shifted the debate over immigration reform? MORE
Source: Wikipedia Commons

Fiscal Policy in Guatemala

23 October | Maynor Cabrera, Nora Lustig, Hilcías Morán
Guatemala is one of the most unequal countries in Latin America and has the highest incidence of poverty. Fiscal incidence analysis shows that taxes and transfers do almost nothing to reduce inequality and poverty overall or along ethnic and rural-urban lines . MORE
Source: Flickr/Bryan Pocius

A Conversation with Lucho Garzón

20 October | Marielle Coutrix
Minister Garzón, former mayor of Bogota and presidential candidate, discussed the government’s major labor policies, which aim at extending social security for all workers,  reducing the size of the informal sector, and insuring a reasonable minimum wage. MORE

The Case for Green Growth in Latin America

14 October | Lisa Viscidi and Paul Shortell
As Peru gears up to host UN climate change talks in December, many Latin American countries are demonstrating that “green growth” strategies can promote economic development while keeping emissions in check. MORE

A Conversation with Mauricio Cárdenas

9 October | Megan Cook
"Colombia has a remarkable economy," Finance Minister Mauricio Cárdenas said Thursday at the Inter-American Dialogue, highlighting the country's growth rate, which was revised upward by the International Monetary Fund Wednesday to 4.8 percent for the year. MORE

Navigating Risks in Brazil's Energy Sector

2 October | Paul Shortell
New Dialogue report analyzes critical challenges to investing in Brazil’s oil and gas, electricity generation and transmission sectors from the perspective of Chinese companies and identifies opportunities for cooperation and policy improvement. MORE

Refining Markets in Latin America

1 October | Paul Shortell
The Inter-American Dialogue hosted a group of the industry’s leading experts for a workshop on refining markets in the Americas, part of our series on the impact of the North American oil boom on Latin America, in cooperation with the Inter-American Development Bank. MORE

A New Course for Brazil

30 September | Marielle Coutrix
Come what may in October, the prediction is that Brazil will implement fiscal reforms all the while maintaining its current foreign relations. Amid the forecast of greater ideological fragmentation, it is clear that the election outcome will have a serious effect on the future of Brazilian politics. MORE

China's Mining Activity in Latin America

25 September | Paul Shortell
How is China’s approach to overseas mining changing, and what does that mean for Latin America? In a first-ever, comprehensive overview of recent findings on Chinese mining activity in Latin America, Iacob Koch-Weser offers an review of the  literature on Chinese overseas mining activity. MORE

A Conversation with Simón Gaviria

19 September | Illona de Zamarocsy
In his current position, Gaviria, an economist who previously served in the Colombian congress and was president of the Liberal Party, will play a key role in proposing policies to carry out the three priorities of President Juan Manuel Santos’ second-term agenda:  peace, equity and education. MORE

Immigration Policy: What's Next?

 19 September | Marielle Coutrix
The recent upsurge in unaccompanied minors in the southern border has re-framed the political discussion on immigration reform. President Obama recently announced that he plans to delay executive action on immigration reform until after November’s midterm elections. MORE

The Drug Problem in the Americas

 9 September | Marielle Coutrix
The OAS produced  a landmark report on hemispheric drug policies last year, which sets out  the data and analysis that make clear the risks of sticking with current approaches. It also carefully lays out the alternatives, which present their own risks and benefits. MORE