Increasing the purchasing power of the population is part of the work programs of most Latin American governments. Author: AFP
Created as part of an alliance against inflation, which makes life more expensive for our citizens, 11 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean demonstrate that we can try to solve food and other problems “among ourselves”, in what I would say, simply and in vernacular. , Bolivian President Luis Arce… If we have the political will to do so.
A scientist may technically point out that it is not possible to lower tariffs and reverse other mechanisms created by global economic and financial turmoil and unfair trade. He is right.
But as long as order and commercial deals are coming in that take into account the realities of each, we can try to alleviate some of our worries without waiting for loans from international financial institutions, or the forgiveness of their debts, or the full implementation of what is. established by the World Trade Organization when using the phrase “fair treatment”, which should take into account asymmetries and promote sustainable development. These never come.
The South, whose representation is the summit against inflation and for food sovereignty on Wednesday, April 5, cannot change the rules of the game; but their countries can play against each other by fairer rules, since they are compensatory and correspond to the capabilities and needs of each of them. The required South-South cooperation cannot be just a symbol.
It is obvious that the reason for the call of Mexico is connected not only with the established world injustice. In particular, the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and the punitive measures of the so-called West against Moscow have contributed to the energy crisis and the resulting rise in food prices, also caused by shortages of fertilizers and rising interest rates. which rich countries wanted to face the challenge.
The FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) report from January last year says that the food price index in December last year was one percent lower than the previous month; but it was still 132.4 percent higher on average than the prices recorded for all of 2021.
Inflation in Latin America and the Caribbean averaged 7.9 percent in 2022, according to the World Bank, although the index shows different numbers from country to country.
According to ECLAC (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean), the current food price cycle is the most pronounced on record and food insecurity in the region is estimated to have increased more than the global average.
And despite having many food-producing countries, Latin America and the Caribbean imports about 28 percent of the food in the main basket, while they only export to the Western Hemisphere, 9.6 percent of what is produced.
FAO has warned that as a result of all this, 300 million hungry people will be registered worldwide this year. Hunger, as Lula said, has no ideology…
To mitigate these realities, which take on their own characteristics in each country, and to put into practice what Mexico has proposed and supported by ten other countries in the region, we can count on ourselves and put on the table what each of them can contribute and what each of they are required to achieve bilateral exchanges or broader participation that do not prejudice the commitments our countries have already made with other peers or with other entities. That’s what it’s all about.
Of course, the decision of governments alone may not be enough; For this reason, representatives of private and public businesses, as well as manufacturers’ associations, will be invited to a face-to-face meeting on further consideration of the issue, scheduled for May 6 and 7 in the Mexican resort city of Cancun. They should also give their support.
Perhaps it is not so difficult, as we can see with a lot of evidence in this appointment, for which it is possible that some of the measures that the Technical Group has been entrusted to it for this purpose, such as the Declaration issued at the end of the virtual Summit, that the exchange of products basic basket and intermediate goods takes place on the best terms, and with the priority of reducing the cost of these products for the poorest and most vulnerable segments of the population.
Fortunately, the power of convening and response was demonstrated by the meeting, which, according to Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel, the organizer Andres Manuel López Obrador mentioned to him in February, and which managed to attract attention from 11 countries in such a short time.
And stimulated by the fact that in order to achieve their goals, it is necessary almost exclusively to put into practice the principles of complementarity and cooperation – and, why not, solidarity, although for some this word has more than ALBA since its founding by Fidel and Chávez in December 2004.
This testifies to the validity of the attributes proclaimed by the Bolivarian Alliance for the peoples of our America, although for their practical application it is not necessary to belong to it.
If the experience, as expected, proves to be fruitful and spreads to the rest of the members of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, as the creators of the initiative suggest, our region will move a little more towards the well-being of our peoples, and new steps will be taken towards integration.
Source: Juventud Rebelde