“<a href="http://www.janes.com/article/52150/russian-scandal-postpones-venezuelan-kalashnikov-munition-factories">Russian scandal postpones Venezuelan Kalashnikov, munition factories</a>

Russian scandal postpones Venezuelan Kalashnikov, munition factories

By Iñigo Guevara

Construction of a Kalashnikov assault rifle factory and corresponding munitions factory will be further delayed, according to Russian reports. The delays are being attributed to an alleged multi-million dollar fraud that led to corruption charges filed against a former Russian senator. …

 

<a href="http://www.bloombergview.com/quicktake/venezuela-price-revolution">Venezuela: The Price of Revolution</a>

Venezuela: The Price of Revolution

By Nathan Crooks

Venezuela has more oil than Saudi Arabia and more poverty than Brazil. As the world’s only left-wing petrostate, it hopes to light a revolutionary path to prosperity for Latin America’s poor. …

 

<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/13/world/americas/corruption-scandals-driving-protests-in-guatemala-and-honduras.html?_r=1">Wave of Protests Spreads to Scandal-Weary Honduras and Guatemala</a>

Wave of Protests Spreads to Scandal-Weary Honduras and Guatemala

By Elizabeth Malkin

MEXICO CITY — In Guatemala, angry citizens marched under pelting rain, undeterred. In Honduras, they carried torches at dusk. A wave of protests against corruption scandals that is sweeping across Latin America has reached Central America. …

 

<a href="http://nationalinterest.org/feature/america-must-take-brazil-seriously-13111">America Must Take Brazil Seriously</a>

America Must Take Brazil Seriously

By Eric Farnsworth

BRAZIL IS on the move. Its economic strength over the past decade has provided the primary means for it to develop long-standing ambitions for a larger global-leadership stake—a path that U.S. policy makers have encouraged for many years, presuming that a stronger, democratic Brazil more actively engaged globally would be a natural ally for the United States. …

 

<a href="http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/8f9cc4ac-1291-11e5-8cd7-00144feabdc0.html?siteedition=intl#axzz3d8jI9rec">Colombia to persist with peace talks despite attacks</a>

Colombia to persist with peace talks despite attacks

By Andres Schipani

Colombia’s president Juan Manuel Santos said this weekend he would persist with the most advanced peace negotiations in five decades of armed conflict even as Marxist rebels step up attacks on security forces and disrupt energy supplies. …

 

<a href="http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/news/2015/06/14/eln-guerrilla-commander-killed-in-military-operation-in-colombia/">ELN guerrilla commander killed in military operation in Colombia</a>

ELN guerrilla commander killed in military operation in Colombia

Jose Amin Hernandez Manrique, commander of the Dario Martinez Front of the National Liberation Army, or ELN, guerrilla group, was killed in a military operation in Antioquia, a province in northwestern Colombia, officials said Sunday. …

 

<a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/06/14/us-venezuela-usa-idUSKBN0OU0VN20150614">U.S., Venezuelan officials meet in Haiti, continue quiet diplomacy</a>

U.S., Venezuelan officials meet in Haiti, continue quiet diplomacy

By Girish Gupta

A U.S. envoy has met Venezuela’s second most powerful official in Haiti in a further sign of rapprochement between the ideological foes, according to Venezuelan state media.

Thomas Shannon, counselor to Secretary of State John Kerry, has emerged in recent months as a go-between for Caracas and Washington, visiting Venezuela a couple of times for low-profile meetings with President Nicolas Maduro.

 

 

<a href="http://www.wsj.com/articles/cuba-after-the-castros-the-likely-scenario-1434319520">Cuba After the Castros: The Likely Scenario</a>

Cuba After the Castros: The Likely Scenario

By José Azel

The 2008 succession from Fidel to Raúl Castro was efficient and effective. But the popular hallucination outside the island—in which Gen. Castro intervenes forcefully to end the communist era and inaugurates a democratic, market-oriented Cuba—is not going to be how the story ends.

 

<a href="http://sumarium.com/cae-la-popularidad-de-humala-a-17-por-las-denuncias-contra-su-esposa/">Cae la popularidad de Humala por denuncias contra su esposa</a>

Cae la popularidad de Humala por denuncias contra su esposa

(Lima, Perú. AFP) La popularidad del presidente peruano, Ollanta Humala, cayó a 17% en junio, su nivel más bajo desde que llegó al poder en julio de 2011, jalonado por denuncias de lavado de activos contra su esposa, según un sondeo publicado este domingo.

 

 

 

 

<a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/china-plans-to-build-a-3300-mile-railway-across-south-america-2015-6">China’s $10 billion railway across South America is either bold or insane</a>

China’s $10 billion railway across South America is either bold or insane

BY BARBARA TASCH

China has just agreed on feasibility studies with Brazil and Peru for a 3,300-mile rail link connecting the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, Reuters reported recently. …

 

<a href="http://sumarium.com/cae-la-popularidad-de-humala-a-17-por-las-denuncias-contra-su-esposa/">Europe tries to compete with China’s influence in Latin America</a>

Europe tries to compete with China’s influence in Latin America

BY ROBIN EMMOTT AND ANDREAS RINKE

Unable to match China’s offer of $250 billion in investment in Latin America, the EU sought ways on Thursday to avoid being marginalized in the region, offering new trade deals, visa-free travel and deeper ties. …

 

Peña, sin el “momento político” que necesita

Peña, sin el “momento político” que necesita

Por Francisco Garfias

Un think tank estadunidense, en el que participan funcionarios demócratas y republicanos, hizo un análisis de las pasadas elecciones mexicanas para la compañía Visión Américas, dedicada a identificar oportunidades de negocios en América Latina.

El informe, que contiene más sombras que luces para el gobierno federal y los partidos políticos, advierte que los resultados en las urnas no le dan al presidente Peña el “momento político” que requiere para salvaguardar su ambiciosa agenda de reformas estructurales.

Destaca, eso ...  

Mixed bag from Mexico’s Sunday elections-By Roger F. Noriega

Mixed bag from Mexico’s Sunday elections-By Roger F. Noriega

By Roger F. Noriega

Mexico’s ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) barely held on to a working majority in the 500-member lower house of Congress, according to preliminary results of Sunday’s national elections. And, history was made with the election of the first independent gubernatorial candidate; Jaime Rodriguez Calderón, known as “The Bronco,” will govern the northern state of Nuevo Leon, an industrial hub whose $81 billion economy makes it the second richest in the country. The elections represent a mixed bag ...  

The Cuban Market Mirage-By José R. Cárdenas

The Cuban Market Mirage-By José R. Cárdenas

By José R. Cárdenas

It’s a safe bet that neither Cy Tokmakjian or Stephen Purvis will be attending a Brookings Institution event next week on doing business in Cuba. Canadian and British businessmen, respectively, they each suffered through Kafkaesque ordeals in Cuba after they did just that, somehow running afoul of some regulation in Cuba’s opaque and arbitrary judicial system. After being imprisoned for months and robbed of their assets by the Castro government, they were finally released only after heavy ...  

Mexico’s Energy Reform: So Far, So Good

Mexico’s Energy Reform: So Far, So Good

By Roger F. Noriega and Felipe Trigos

The enactment of the “secondary legislation” to implement Mexico’s energy reform is an impressive step forward.  That country’s economic future could be fundamentally transformed, if Mexico’s leaders follow through on a transparent, sustained effort to modernize the oil, gas, and electricity sectors and keep government spending and interference from undermining prosperity.

For the first time in 80 years, Mexico has opened the door to private investment in the energy sector, leaving behind years ...  

Why isn’t Mexico’s security strategy working?

Why isn’t Mexico’s security strategy working?

BY ROGER F. NORIEGA AND FELIPE TRIGOS

Key Points:

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto must recognize that security is not a distraction from his economic agenda and that confronting criminal enterprises is indispensable to the nation’s stability and prosperity. Peña Nieto has not implemented an effective security strategy, and his response to drug violence is uncalibrated and improvised. Mexico should respond more effectively to innovative, globalized cartels and be more receptive to US collaboration so that it can counter criminality fueled by US demand ...  

Brazil and Mexico: Hope or hype?

Brazil and Mexico: Hope or hype?

BY ROGER F. NORIEGA & FELIPE TRIGOS

Key points in this Outlook:

Key Latin American governments, such as Brazil and Mexico, must adopt economic, fiscal, and energy policies that will maximize job creation, sustainable growth, and energy self-sufficiency. The performance of Latin American economies has a disproportionate effect on US prosperity, heightening the costs of the Obama administration’s indifference toward the region. The American economy will benefit from more vigor and vision as US policy encourages economic partnerships with Latin America that cultivate a ...  

Brazil’s oil boom constrained by nationalist, political agenda

Brazil’s oil boom constrained by nationalist, political agenda

By Roger F. Noriega and Felipe Trigos

The Washington Post this morning exposes the disappointing performance of Brazil’s petroleum industry, citing the inherent problems with state-owned oil companies that were explained last July in AEI’s Latin America Outlook, “Latin American energy monopolies: Boom or bust?”

The Post reports, “Petrobras is saddled with mandates and heavy government interference that analysts say have overburdened the company. To revive the shipbuilding industry, for example, Petrobras and its partners must use oil platforms and other heavy equipment built ...  

Mexico’s Reforms: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Mexico’s Reforms: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

BY ROGER NORIEGA & FELIPE TRIGOS

Mexico’s Congress has delivered an energy reform plan that could alter Mexico’s economic outlook for decades to come, but its populist tax policies and profligate spending threaten the steady growth that Mexico achieved in recent years.

The Mexican Congress has exceeded expectations and produced a reform package that could revitalize the country’s crucial energy sector, allaying concerns about the energy plans President Enrique Peña Nieto had earlier presented.

This hopeful development is the most important achievement under the Pacto por ...  

México: Secuestrado y a Merced de la Demagogia

México: Secuestrado y a Merced de la Demagogia

Por Felipe Trigos

Las últimas dos semanas, México, y específicamente el Distrito Federal, han sido sujetos al secuestro por parte de la minorías rijosas que se niegan a aceptar reformas medulares para el desarrollo del país.

Una minoría perteneciente a una facción radical del sindicato de pseudo maestros (CNTE) que se opone a la reforma educativa—que entre otras cosas propone la evaluación de maestros para determinar su eficiencia—ha desatado el caos para demostrar su inconformidad con el desarrollo.

Bloqueos de calles, aeropuertos e ...  

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Ambassador Roger Noriega discusses the implications and impact of the president’s visit to Cuba on PBS News Hour

Felipe Trigos habló sobre la visita del presidente Obama a Cuba

Testimony by Ambassador Roger Noriega before House Foreign Affairs Committee Hearing on Latin America in 2015: A Year in Review

Jose Cardenas discusses Cuba's problematic ties abroad at the Center for Security Policy’s 4th Annual Latin America Symposium

About

During the last several decades, the United States has invested billions of dollars in trying to help the governments of Latin America and the Caribbean deliver better lives for their citizens. This has meant helping them increase internal security by combating the illicit growing and trafficking in narcotics and the activities of terrorist groups, as well as helping them to shore up their democratic and free market institutions.

Unfortunately, in recent years, continued progress in these areas has been threatened, not least by the elections of radical populist governments in Venezuela, Bolivia, and Ecuador. These governments have instituted retrograde agendas that include the propagation of class warfare, state domination of the economy, assaults on private property, anti-Americanism, support for such international pariahs as Iran, and lackluster support for regional counter-terrorism and counter-narcotics initiatives.

We are a group of concerned policy experts that fear the results of these destructive agendas for individual freedom, prosperity, and the well-being of the peoples of the region. Our goal is to inform American policymakers and American and international public opinion of the dangers of these radical populist regimes to inter-American security.