EU-MERCOSUR: Does Their New Association Agreement Mean Much?

Link: https://aulablog.net/2019/08/06/eu-mercosur-does-their-new-association-agreement-mean-much/

As Posted on American University's Center for Latin American and Latino Studies Blog on August 6, 2019

After nearly two decades of intermittent negotiations, the European Union and the four core MERCOSUR nations (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay) have finally inked a trade agreement, but its real impact won’t be felt for years, if ever. When the negotiations began in the mid-1990s, the EU was the largest trading partner of the MERCOSUR countries, and the United States was number two. Today China is in first place, the European Union is second, and the U.S. is fourth, behind intra-Latin American trade (EU investors, however, continue to have the largest stock of foreign direct investment assets in the MERCOSUR region). When ratified, the EU-MERCOSUR Association Agreement, signed in Brussels on June 28, will exempt a little more than 90 percent of two-way trade from tariffs.

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08/07/19. 05:57:00 am. Categories: Articles ,

Latin America Takes on Big Pharma

Link: https://aulablog.net/2019/02/19/latin-america-takes-on-big-pharma/

As Posted on American University's Center for Latin American and Latino Studies Blog, February 18, 2019

For the past decade, Latin America has attempted to reduce the prices of high-cost medications through either joint negotiations, pooled procurement, or both, but so far with limited success. The incentive for reducing prices is that all Latin American countries have national health care systems, and in some cases (such as Colombia and Uruguay) are legally obligated to provide their citizens with any required medication free of charge and regardless of cost.

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02/19/19. 11:02:00 pm. Categories: Articles ,

Southern Cone: Rapid Transition to Non-Conventional Renewable Energy

Link: https://aulablog.net/2018/10/19/southern-cone-rapid-transition-to-non-conventional-renewable-energy/

As posted on American University's Center for Latin American and Latino Studies Blog, October 19, 2018

South America’s Southern Cone is undertaking a transition to non-conventional, renewable energy resources – that is, production not dependent on fossil fuels or large-scale hydropower – that creates the opportunity for a historic regional consensus on energy policy. Uruguay and Chile are at the forefront. Both lack significant fossil fuel reserves and have experienced crises when droughts detrimentally impacted hydro-supplied electricity. For them, the rapid shift to other forms of domestically sourced renewables is as much a means to guarantee energy security as to combat climate change. Approximately a third of Uruguay’s electricity is currently generated from wind power (up from only one percent as recently as 2013). Similarly, about a third of Chile’s electric power – depending on the time of day – is sourced from the sun and the wind.

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10/20/18. 10:49:00 pm. Categories: Articles ,

U.S.-Latin America: Lack of Vision from Washington Didn't Start with Trump

Link: https://aulablog.net/2018/03/16/u-s-latin-america-lack-of-vision-from-washington-didnt-start-with-trump/

As posted on American University's Center for Latin American and Latino Studies Blog, March 16, 2018

U.S. leadership in the hemisphere has declined significantly over the past two decades – manifested in Washington’s inability to implement a comprehensive environmental and energy strategy for the Americas; conclude a hemispheric trade accord; revitalize the inter-American system; and stem the rising tide of Chinese influence. In a recently published book, I argue that Washington under Presidents George W. Bush (2001-2009), Barack Obama (2009-2017), and now Donald Trump has lacked vision in Latin America and the Caribbean, and has allowed a narrow security agenda to dominate. The most noteworthy accomplishment – the assertion of central government control in Colombia – was largely bankrolled by the Colombians themselves who also devised most of the strategy to achieve that goal.

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03/16/18. 09:22:00 pm. Categories: Articles ,

Chile's Transition to a Clean Energy Matrix

Link: https://aulablog.net/2017/09/11/chiles-transition-to-clean-energy-matrix/

As Posted on American University's Center for Latin American and Latino Studies Blog, September 11, 2017

Since Michelle Bachelet’s return to the presidency in March 2014, Chile has aggressively pursued an ambitious program to transition the country’s energy matrix toward non-conventional renewable resources. The emphasis on non-conventional includes mini-hydro facilities with a generating capacity under 20 Megawatts, geothermal, solar, wind, biomass, and potentially ocean currents. Chile aims to generate 60 percent of its electricity from domestic renewable energy resources (including all forms of hydro) by 2035, and 70 percent by 2050. To encourage that transition, Chile is one of only two Latin American countries (the other being Mexico) to establish a carbon tax, under which energy-intensive industries and utilities that exceed mandated emissions levels are charged US$5.00 per ton of CO2 emissions. Chile’s drive to adopt a cleaner energy matrix is motivated as much by a desire to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as it is to enhance energy security.

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09/12/17. 08:36:00 pm. Categories: Articles ,

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