What's New From AQ

  • Americas Quarterly Launch: China's Global Rise

    Thursday, January 26, 2012

    China's Global Rise: Implications for the Americas
    Americas Quarterly Winter Issue Launch (webcast available)

    Monday, February 13, 2012
    5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

    Registration: 5:30-6:00 p.m.
    Presentation: 6:00-7:30 p.m.
    Reception: 7:30-8:30 p.m.

    AS/COA
    680 Park Avenue
    New York, NY
    Map of location

    Please join Americas Society and Council of the Americas for the launch of the Winter 2012 issue of Americas Quarterly, China’s Global Rise: Implications for the Americas.

    This event will include a panel discussion to offer new perspectives and details on the China–Latin America relationship and its implications for the United States. How do Beijing’s development, trade and geopolitical goals intersect with regional development and politics? Do these goals challenge U.S. economic and geostrategic interests? Our panel of experts will explore what the growing economic and diplomatic ties between China and Latin America mean for our hemisphere.

    Keynote Speaker: Carlos Gutierrez, Vice Chairman of the Institutional Clients Group, Citigroup, and former Secretary of Commerce

    Confirmed speakers:

    Gary Clyde Hufbauer, Senior Researcher, Peterson Institute for International Economics
    Elizabeth Economy
    , C.V. Starr Senior Fellow and Director for Asia studies, Council on Foreign Relations
    Eric Farnsworth, Vice President, Americas Society/Council of the Americas
    Pablo A. Goldberg, Managing Director and Global Head of Emerging Markets Research, HSBC

    Moderator: Christopher Sabatini, Editor-in-Chief, Americas Quarterly; Senior Director of Policy, Americas Society and Council of the Americas

    For additional information and to register, click here.


  • Transportation and Communication Infrastructure in Brazil

    Monday, February 6, 2012

    AQ Editor-in-Chief Christopher Sabatini will chair a panel focusing on transportation and communication infrastructure in Latin America, how they facilitate and/or hinder commerce and economic development, and what public and private incentives can be deployed to resolve these issues. Part of a comprehensive event organized by Americas Society/Council of the Americas on the topic of infrastructure, the panel will take place in Recife on Wednesday, February 8, from 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. It will also be webcast.

    The discussion will draw on original research conducted by Barbara Kotschwar of the Peterson Institute for International Economics in collaboration with Americas Society and with support from the GE foundation. The research, published in the most recent issue of Americas Quarterly, found that, though concerted unilateral, regional and multilateral trade liberalization efforts have substantially increased trade with and among Latin American countries in the past two decades, other, non-tariff barriers persist as significant obstacles to trade. Chief among them is inadequate infrastructure, which has not only impeded the region from further global integration, but is also a cause of Latin America’s lagging performance in world trade compared to Asian countries.

    Learn more about this event on the conference blog: www.as-coa.org/Brazil2012.      


  • AQ’s Jason Marczak Encourages U.S. to Look North for Oil

    Monday, February 6, 2012

    With continued uncertainty in the Middle East, pressure is growing in the U.S. to achieve energy security, if not energy independence. Jason Marczak, Senior Editor of Americas Quarterly and Director of Policy at Americas Society/Council of the Americas, writes in an article published today in World Politics Review that Canadian oil—including the Keystone XL pipeline—can play a significant role in maintaining U.S. energy stability.

    U.S. Energy Security, not Politics, Should Drive Keystone XL Debate
    Jason Marczak

    Recent Iranian saber rattling about closing the Strait of Hormuz is yet another reason for the U.S. to look north to Canada for oil imports. Military confrontation or a perceived threat of it in the strait -- the route for almost 17 million barrels of oil daily -- would wreak havoc on global oil supplies. The effects for the United States would be particularly severe: 75 percent of oil from Saudi Arabia, which at 12 percent of net U.S. imports of crude oil and petroleum products is our second-largest supplier, passes through this strategic waterway.

    Occasional threats to global oil supply are one reason why U.S. energy security requires “an all-out, all-of-the-above strategy,” as President Barack Obama put it in his 2012 State of the Union address. Though this strategy must include cleaner natural gas, as well as alternative energy sources, the U.S. will continue to depend on oil to satisfy its energy needs in the short-to-medium term.

    Here, Canada, which at 25 percent is already the United States’ top source of net oil imports, can play an even-greater role in maintaining the stability of the U.S. energy picture. With 175 billion barrels, the province of Alberta is home to the world’s third-largest oil reserves, behind Saudi Arabia at 260 billion barrels and Venezuela at 211 billion -- and it is right in the U.S. backyard.

    Read the rest of the article here.


  • Social Inclusion: Defining and Measuring the Concept

    Thursday, January 26, 2012

    Social Inclusion: Defining and Measuring the Concept (Webcast available)
    Thursday, February 2, 2012
    5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
    Registration: 5:30-6:00 p.m.
    Presentation: 6:00-7:30 p.m.
    Reception: 7:30-8:30 p.m.

    AS/COA
    680 Park Avenue
    New York, NY
    Map of location

    Please join Americas Society and Council of the Americas for a public event on social inclusion in the Americas and the role of the public and private sectors.

    This event will serve as a preliminary roundtable discussion for the Spring issue of Americas Quarterly, which will focus on the economic and political dynamics of social inclusion. This issue of AQ will attempt to untangle the different aspects of social inclusion: social policy, political representation, social and human rights, economic growth and non-discrimination, and will cover topics including the political inclusion of Afro-descendant and Indigenous communities, the importance of social mobility to business and investment, and measuring comparative social inclusion.

    Confirmed Speakers:

    Monica Carillo, Founder and Director, Lundú
    Álvaro García Hurtado, former Chilean Minister of the Economy; Consultant, United Nations Development Programme
    José R. Molinas Vega, Senior Economist, Poverty Reduction and Economic Management Latin America and the Caribbean Region, The World Bank Group
    Judith Morrison, Senior Advisor, Social Sector, Gender and Diversity Unit, Inter-American Development Bank
    Heraldo Muñoz, Assistant Secretary-General and Director, Regional Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean, United Nations Development Programme

    Moderator: Christopher Sabatini, Editor-in-Chief, Americas Quarterly; Senior Director of Policy, Americas Society and Council of the Americas

    For additional information and to register, click here.


  • New Americas Quarterly—“China and Latin America”— Released Today

    Wednesday, January 11, 2012

    The growing economic and diplomatic ties between China and Latin America have boosted economies and shifted political dynamics in the Americas, changing—perhaps permanently—U.S.–Latin America relations. How do Beijing’s development, trade and geopolitical goals intersect with regional development and politics? Do these goals challenge U.S. economic and geostrategic interests? Pick up the new issue of Americas Quarterly and find out.

    The Winter 2012 AQ adds new perspective and details to the China–Latin America relationship with a series of articles by both top China specialists and by Latin Americanists looking at China’s global rise. Elizabeth Economy of the Council on Foreign Relations and Zhang Mingde of the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies—both China experts—explain China’s world view and foreign policy. Osvaldo Rosales of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean analyzes how Chinese manufactured exports undermine the region's, and our signature Charticle lays out the facts about Chinese trade and investment and growing trade complaints in the hemisphere against the Asian giant. A photo series on Chinese communities in Mexico highlights the human element of this deepening relationship.

    In other articles, journalist Mike McDonald discusses the weak state capacity and pervasive crime that threaten Guatemala and Nicaragua as both inaugurate presidents to new terms. Silvio Waisbord of George Washington University cautions that social media, far from a solution to the problems of censorship and inequality of old media, is also challenged by the risk of state manipulation and lack of professionalism, and Gregory Elacqua of Universidad Diego Portales in Chile argues that the Chilean student protest movement has shaped public opinion but has yet to substantially influence public policy. Stephanie Leutert gives an on-the-ground report of the plight of Colombian refugees in Ecuador.

    Subscribe and get your copy of Americas Quarterly.


  • AQ’s Chris Sabatini on Why the U.S. Should Care about China's Rise in Latin America

    Thursday, January 19, 2012

    China's increased investment and trade in Latin America pose a trade policy challenge for the U.S., writes AQ editor-in-chief and AS/COA senior director of policy Christopher Sabatini in a new op-ed for The Miami Herald in advance of the Winter issue of Americas Quarterly. It will be in both the U.S. and Latin American countries’ best interest to promote greater trade between themselves.

    The Subtle Economic Challenge of China
    The Miami Herald

    Latin America’s exports to China have jumped 1,500 percent from 2000 to 2010, China’s investment in Latin America jumped over 180 percent between 2008 and 2010, and the Middle Kingdom has displaced the U.S. as Brazil and Chile’s number one trade partner. Should the United States care?

    Yes, though its response should be an economic one. And that will require tackling the United States’ domestic policy contradictions and opposition concerning free trade.

    For one, Latin America’s trade with China echoes the “dependency” exploitation denounced by development economists 40 years ago. The bulk of goods going to China are commodities. To cite some numbers, 88 percent of Argentina’s exports to China, 75 percent of Brazil’s, 95 percent of Ecuador’s and 97 percent of Venezuela’s from 2007 to 2009 were either soy-related products, petroleum or iron ore. But since most of these exports involve little more than taking them out of the ground and shipping them, they also mean minimal employment and reduced chances for these countries to move up the development ladder.

    At the same time, China’s increased share of manufactured exports globally has undercut Latin American industry — exactly the sector most needed for broad-based employment and development.

    To continue reading, access the full op-ed in The Miami Herald.


  • Americas Quarterly Launch: Impact Investing

    Wednesday, January 11, 2012

    *This event has now passed. You can view a video of it here. Summary forthcoming.

    Thursday, January 19, 2012
    5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
    Registration: 5:30-6:00 p.m.
    Presentation: 6:00-7:30 p.m.
    Reception: 7:30-8:30 p.m.

    AS/COA
    680 Park Avenue
    New York, NY
    Map of location

    Please join Americas Society and Council of the Americas for the launch of the Fall 2011 issue of Americas Quarterly, Impact Investing: Profit Meets Purpose.

    This event will include a panel discussion on the several angles of impact investing. How can private, for-profit investment capital become a force for social development and social inclusion, addressing such difficulties as public health challenges, climate change and urbanization? What are the sustainable and profitable business models that already exist, and which remain to be developed?

    Keynote Speaker: Elizabeth Littlefield, President and Chief Executive Officer, Overseas Private Investment Corporation

    Confirmed speakers:     

    Antony Bugg-Levine, CEO, Nonprofit Finance Fund
    Margot Brandenburg, Associate Director, Rockefeller Foundation
    Liam Brody, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Corporate Relations, Root Capital
    Luiz Ros, Manager, Opportunities for the Majority, Inter-American Development Bank

    Moderator: Christopher Sabatini, Editor-in-Chief, Americas Quarterly; Senior Director of Policy, Americas Society and Council of the Americas

     


  • Today: Día de los Reyes

    Friday, January 6, 2012

    El Día de los Tres Reyes Magos will be celebrated today in Hispanic communities across the hemisphere. Translated as “Day of the Three Kings” or “Day of the Three Wise Men,” the holiday marks the coming of the three three wise men with gifts of frankincense, gold and myrrh for the baby Jesus. It is traditionally celebrated with gift-giving, special foods and street processions. Children may leave out an empty shoe or box of hay on the night of January 5, in hopes of finding them filled with treasures the next morning. Bakeries are filled with roscas, a rich, ring-shaped cake stuffed with dried fruit and nuts which often contains a hidden baby Jesus and is usually accompanied by hot chocolate.

    El Día de los Reyes is perhaps most famously celebrated in Mexico, which boasts the worlds-largest rosca. This year’s monumental cake measured 740 meters (2,427 feet), weighed 9,375 kg (20,670 pounds) and cost 1,142,800 pesos ($82,955), according to the government of Mexico’s Districto Federal.

    For those hoping to celebrate in New York, El Museo del Barrio will host its 35th-annual Three Kings Day parade in East Harlem. The procession—which will include camels, music, puppets, and dancing—will begin at 10:30 am at 106th Street and Madison Avenue and culminate at noon at 115th Street and Park Avenue. Teatro SEA, New York’s only Latino children’s theater company, will throw its annual festival in the Lower East Side from 3 to 5 pm.

    And if you’re on the hunt for a good rosca, head to the Tulcingo or Coatzingo Bakeries in Queens, New York.


  • AQ’s Jason Marczak Urges U.S. to Act in its Interests in El Salvador

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011

    Earlier this month, the U.S. senate rejected the nomination of Mari Carmen Aponte for the position of U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador. In a recent op-ed in The Houston Chronicle, Americas Quarterly senior editor and AS/COA director of policy Jason Marczak explains why stalling on the appointment is contrary to U.S. national security and economic interests.

    Partisan interests in the U.S. Congress have again scuttled policy priorities.

    Earlier this month, by rejecting the nomination of Mari Carmen Aponte as U.S. ambassador to El Salvador, the Senate - by a margin of 49 to 37, and 11 votes short of the 60 needed to break the filibuster - continued an unfortunate history of playing politics with those nominated for Western Hemisphere positions. Before blocking Aponte's nomination, the Senate approved Norman Eisen as ambassador to the Czech Republic.

    The timing could not be worse. Given its geographic proximity, the deterioration of the security environment in Central America is of direct national consequence for the United States. If left unchecked, drug trafficking organizations and gang violence will overwhelm underfunded and under-equipped governments. In fact, after Southern Africa, Central America has the highest number of homicides per 100,000 people of any subregion in the world, according to the 2011 Global Study on Homicide published by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. In Honduras, which has the world's highest murder rate, 82.1 of every 100,000 people are the victims of a homicide; El Salvador comes next with a rate of 66.0 per 100,000 people.

    It is a situation that requires continued, uninterrupted attention by the U.S. and its partners in the region. The U.S. should be concerned about the effects of uncontrolled violence in an area so close to our borders, but other national interests are at stake, namely trade and immigration.

    To continue reading, access the full op-ed in The Houston Chronicle.


  • Un Techo para mi País launches holiday campaign

    Monday, December 19, 2011

    *Vea abajo para leer este anuncio en español.

    The non-profit organization Un Techo para mi País (A Roof for my Country) today launched a regional holiday campaign under the slogan, “This Christmas, the most excluded families don’t need a present, they need an opportunity.”

    The objective of the campaign is to raise funds for the construction of emergency housing for families living in poverty and to further the organization’s mission of social empowerment. Un Techo para mi País works to improve the quality of life for impoverished communities by building transitional housing and implementing social inclusion programs in 19 countries across Latin America.

    Donations can be made via a web platform, where visitors can choose an ornament of $5, $15, $15, or $40 to “hang” on a tree, as well as leave a message. Payment can be processed through either WebPay or PayPal.


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