WASHINGTON, JUNE 1 – President Joe Biden will seek regional consensus on a new economic plan to build on existing trade agreements with Latin America and present a plan to address the growing migration population at the US summit, U.S. officials have said. on Tuesday.
Looking ahead to Biden’s priorities for the June 6-10 meeting in Los Angeles, administrative officials said his message would be “we can’t do business as usual” in the area. But they did give you a few details on how you will deal with the challenges posed by the COVID-19 epidemic.
Conference preparations have been overshadowed by the threat of disgraceful leadership of some regional leaders, including Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, if Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua are not included.
Washington is hopeful that Lopez Obrador will travel, but he hopes his absence will not hamper efforts to deal with migration or undermine cooperation on the southern US border, an official told reporters, citing anonymous conditions.
The summit is being called to the United States for the first time since the first such meeting in Miami in 1994, as Biden seeks to reaffirm American leadership and challenge China’s growth. He and other leaders will arrive on June 8.
The United States has said it only wants democratically elected government leaders to visit. Last week, a Biden conference coordinator said left-wing governments in Venezuela and Nicaragua would not be invited. He said the decision on Communist Cuba would be in the White House.
“We do not have the final list,” White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters.
One of the aims of the Biden conference will be to help the region recover from the epidemic.
“We will use this conference to bring together regional leaders, the private sector, and civil society organizations behind the new economic agenda in Latin America and the Caribbean that I think is looking to build on the free trade agreements we have with the Western Hemisphere,” said one official.
Asked if the summit could come up with a proposal for a regional trade system similar to the framework of the 13-US-Asian Economic Organization Biden announced on his trip to Asia, the official said: “I will not make comparisons.”
Biden’s approach will be to take advantage of the already existing trade agreements, the official said. That would include the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement as well as bilateral agreements with various Latin American countries. Attempts to build a large hemisphere trading center have never failed.
With Biden facing domestic pressure over a record number of immigrants trying to enter the United States along the Mexican border, he is expected to seek help to curb the flow of people north.
The conference will issue a “proclamation” on migration, which includes a package of announcements, according to a second official. “It will not be binding, but it will depend heavily on the future,” the official said, giving a few details.