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Global Leadership for Latin America and the Caribbean

There is no shortage of areas where the region’s countries can leverage their strengths to assume a more active global leadership role. But if the region is to seize the opportunities that lie ahead, it must accelerate development progress at home.

WASHINGTON, DC – The world economy remains beset by challenges, from tight monetary, financial, and fiscal conditions to the effects of the war in Ukraine. These headwinds are impeding global growth – which is expected to slow to 3% this year, compared to 3.5% in 2022 – and damaging lives and livelihoods, with poverty and food insecurity on the rise, particularly in developing countries. In addressing the complex and overlapping challenges the world faces, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) is a region with much to offer.

For starters, LAC countries can help create a more resilient global food market. As early as 2017, the World Economic Forum facilitated a joint ministerial declaration calling for the region to become the “breadbasket of the world.” And at last year’s Summit of the Americas, hosted by the United States, participants released an Agriculture Producers Declaration underscoring the important role of major LAC exporters in strengthening global food security.

The reason is obvious. With one-quarter of the world’s arable land and one-third of its freshwater resources, LAC already comprises the largest net food exporter among world regions. What is needed now is new investment, especially in physical and digital infrastructure and in climate-resilient agriculture, continued technological and competitiveness improvements, and better integration into regional and global value chains.