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Betancur, Pastrana, Sanguinetti and Zedillo dialogue on political stability, economic prosperity and legal security in Latin America

Betancur, Pastrana, Sanguinetti and Zedillo dialogue on political stability, economic prosperity and legal security in Latin America

February 17, 2011

February 16, 2011, Madrid, Spain - El Club de Madrid, with the support of Fundación Carolina, organized in Madrid a breakfast meeting between four of its members, ulio Maria Sanguinetti, President of Uruguay (1985-1990, 1995-2000), Belisario Betancur, President of Colombia (1982-1986), Andrés Pastrana, President of Colombia (1998-2002 ) andErnesto Zedillo, President of Mexico (1994-2000), and business representatives to analyze the situation in Latin America from three key areas: political stability economic prosperity and legal security.  

Latin America is going through a very unique moment, both politically and economically. Despite differences between countries, it can be said in general terms that there has been progress in the region. However, there still remains a shortfall in key development areas such as education, technological investment, infrastructure and the distribution of wealth.

At the breakfast, the four former presidents analyzed the situation facing their countries and the region from three different angles: political stability, economic prosperity and legal security. On the positive side, everyone agreed on the democratic stability of the countries of the region, with the exception of Venezuela. A clear consolidation of democracy is lived, evident not only by the alternation in power, but by the fact that between 2009 and 2010 it is expected that 12 electoral processes in Latin America will be completed. 

They have coincided in pointing out that, despite the resistance that has been shown in the region against the economic crisis that hit Europe and the United States (U.S.) and the macroeconomic prudence which has been maintained, there remain several challenges that hinder economic development. Among them, the problems of legal and citizenship security were discussed, fundamental for the development of a market economy. In this regard, and with particular reference to the problems of organized crime, drugs and arms trafficking, the participants expressed the need to seek new ways to ensure legal security, as applied tactics have not shown good results. 

Another point on which the former presidents agreed was the need to continue structural reforms to facilitate social and economic development. The way in which Latin America has weathered the financial crisis, despite its strong ties with Europe, and especially with the U.S., is due largely to the reforms undertaken in many countries of the region during the nineties. However, this renewal process has been stopped and it is necessary to reintroduce it now. 


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