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Business Executives: Integration Focus

Executives from the hemisphere will focus on integration at this year’s Business Future of the Americas.



Colombia will play an important role on the regional stage as business leaders and government officials from the United States and throughout Latin America and the Caribbean meet to discuss new strategies for hemispheric integration at the XV Business Future of the Americas conference to be held in Cartagena during June 12-14. This event will also host the Mid-Year Meeting of the Association of American Chambers of Commerce in Latin America (AACCLA), that will bring together the representatives of the 23 American Chambers of Commerce in Latin America, which encompass more than  20.000 companies and 80 percent of the American investment in the region.


AmCham Colombia is the host and organizer of the XV Business Future of the Americas conference, which seeks to highlight Colombia’s role in the Latin America and Caribbean region, while at the same time reinforcing the importance of the U.S.-Colombia bilateral relationship.


The timing of this regional conference in Colombia is significant: it coincides with the new momentum that is advancing the U.S.-Colombia FTA closer toward ratification and also coincides with Colombia´s active engagement with its trading partners in the Latin America and Caribbean.


The discussion of new strategies for hemispheric integration will address topics including:


·         the U.S. role in hemispheric integration as the Latin America and Caribbean region looks to new partnerships with Asia and Europe;

·         the competitiveness of the Western Hemisphere as an economic block in the global economy;

·         integration of U.S. and Latin American R&D and production processes;

·         the regulatory, workforce, security, and sustainability challenges associated with integration;

·         energy and transportation projects that support the integration of infrastructure; and

·         the role of innovation as a tool for strengthening trade and investment ties within the hemisphere.


 “Latin America´s moment” will be the focus of an address by Raul Rivera, President of the Foro Innovación and author of the book Nuestra Hora. Mr. Rivera will highlight Latin America´s tremendous economic potential – a region with a population of over 600 million and a combined gross national output of US$6 trillion (PPP)  – and call on business and government leaders to cast aside the misconceptions about the region and to believe in and act on Latin America´s potential.


Latin America´s competitiveness will be another focus of the discussion of hemispheric integration.  Michael Reid, Americas Editor of The Economist since 1999, has reported on the region since 1982 and will discuss the factors affecting the region´s competitiveness and the results of efforts to foster more rapid and sustainable economic growth while tackling social and political challenges.

Officials from trade ministries from throughout the region will discuss how to increase trade and investment ties between the United States and Latin America.  The United States exports three times more to Latin America than it does to China. As the Obama Administration pursues its ambitious goal to double U.S exports over the next five years through the National Export Initiative, the importance of the Latin American market will continue to grow.  Conference participants will also discuss how to increase Latin American countries´ penetration of the U.S. market.


The physical integration of Latin America through transportation and energy projects will be highlighted at the conference.  Participants will gain insight into transportation infrastructure projects through a discussion of rail integration in North America; trends in port infrastructure; the Panama Canal expansion project; and trends in the express industry.  The discussion of energy infrastructure will include topics such as the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas; electrical integration in Meso-america, and renewable energy projects in the Caribbean.


The Business Future of the Americas conference at the Hilton Hotel in Cartagena during June 12-14 will provide an important forum for business and government leaders to debate and define new strategies for hemispheric integration.  Business executives will have the opportunity to establish and strengthen their contacts with colleagues from throughout the Latin America and Caribbean region and the United States.


To register to attend the Business Future of the Americas conference and to obtain additional information, please visit the conference website:  www.colombiameetingaaccla2011.com

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