As United States President, Joe Biden’s foreign policy priorities will not put Latin America at the forefront, though he will approach foreign affairs with most of the region in a more institutionalized way than the Trump administration. The US-LATAM bilateral agenda will continue to be driven by a myriad of issues. During the Biden presidency, the administration is likely to prioritize climate change, relations with Cuba, Venezuela’s crisis, migration, and security with Mexico during its first term.
Latin America will be highly exposed to political and social instability in 2021 and 2022, and the Biden administration’s stance on several electoral processes will influence the operating environment. Latin America could become a “proxy war” for the dominance of American vs. Chinese technology. The Biden administration will push for strict compliance with the USMCA, aiming to curtail China’s investment in Mexico.
Key signposts to track for Biden’s presidential term and its impact on Latin America
|Positive Signposts||Negative Signposts|
|Robust economic stimulus package in the US||Conflict with Mexico and Brazil over trade, climate change, energy, and human rights|
|Respect of FTA agreements signed between the US and Latin American countries||Reduction of foreign aid to Northern Triangle countries|
|Engagement with different governments despite ideological differences||Hardline approach toward governments with different geostrategic interests|
|Pro-immigration policy that differs from the Obama-Trump years||Moderated change to Trump’s immigration policy|
|Normalization of diplomatic relations with Cuba||Maintenance of Trump’s policy toward Cuba due to US electoral politics|
For a country-specific breakdown of how the Biden presidency will impact your business operating in Latin America, watch the full webinar presentation from FrontierView’s CEO, Richard Leggett, and Practice Leader for Latin America research, Alejandro Valerio.
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