Biden offers economic partnership to the Americas: US official

By Humaira Pamuk

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden will announce at the Summit of the Americas a Western Hemisphere Economic Partnership focused on promoting economic recovery based on existing trade deals, officials said on Monday.

Dubbed the Partnership for Economic Prosperity, the plan will cover five areas including investment mobilization, enterprise revitalization, clean energy jobs, resilient supply chains and sustainable trade.

“The overall goal is to build our economies from the bottom up and from the center out, building on the foundations laid by free trade agreements with the region to better address inequality and the lack of economic opportunity,” said a senior official. Reporters on a call.

The plan aims to offer an alternative in a region where China is expanding its sphere of influence. However, it is not clear how many countries in Latin America experiencing economic difficulties would accept such an agreement.

The United States is organizing the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles, a meeting at which Biden intends to address immigration and economic challenges in the region. On Monday, the White House said it would not invite Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua, prompting the Mexican president not to attend the event.

Biden will introduce an “ambitious reform” to the IDB, the official said, adding that the US will also seek a stake in the IDB’s private sector lending arm to support the deployment of private capital.

Eric Farnsworth, Vice President of the Council of the Americas, told a Senate subcommittee last week that the Biden administration should push for a regional trade initiative similar to the one Biden announced during his Asian tour in May.

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However, the idea of ​​a hemisphere-wide trade bloc never took off, in part due to protectionist sentiment among American unions and some lawmakers.

(Reporting by Matt Spitalnick in Los Angeles; Additional reporting by Humira Pamuk and Eric Beach; Spanish editing by Carlos Serrano)

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