(Opposite) We’re not the U.S.:
Harper offers a third model of
development for Latin America.
AQ:Canada is now the Our new strategy focuses on three
third largest source objectives: prosperity, democratic
of foreign invest- governance and enhanced hemi-ment in the southern hemisphere, spheric security.
after the U.S. and Spain, yet many Building on the success of the
people continue to doubt Canada’s North American Free Trade Agree-sustained political commitment to ment (NAFTA) and our free-trade
the region. In what areas specifi- agreements with Chile and Costa Rica,
cally, will Canada follow up on the we recently launched several new
promise made during your trip of re- trade negotiations with hemispheric
engaging seriously in hemispheric partners (including Colombia, Peru,
issues? the Dominican Republic, and the
Prime minister stePhen Caribbean Community, CARICOM).
harPer: As a country of the Amer- These initiatives hold the promise of
icas, our economic prosperity, our strengthening economic ties between
commitment to democratic gover- our countries and for ideas, expertise
nance, and our security are intimately and innovation to flow more freely
linked with the fates of our neigh- between our societies.
bours. Our re-engagement is focused Building democratic institutions
on areas where Canada can make a and strengthening the rule of law is
difference. This demands forging long- a second area in which Canada can
term partnerships and my recent trip offer expertise, unique to our demo-was a first step in that regard. cratic experience but with univer-
There is a perception in the region sal lessons, to countries working to
that there exist only two models for resolve various issues of democratic
development, one that is focused on consolidation. Canada believes the
social justice, the other on economic principal challenges to security and
liberalization. Canada offers a differ- stability in the Americas stem from
ent model, and illustrates that these weak democratic institutions and
are not mutually exclusive. profound socioeconomic inequities.
We are an open society based on Though ongoing violence is present in
the values of freedom, democracy, some countries, the principal threats
human rights, and the rule of law. We to security in the region derive from
have a strong economy that benefits crime and corruption. Therefore, in
from our close relationships with our line with our third objective, Can-trading partners. We are a proud and ada will continue to work with our
independent country with a unique partners and regional institutions to
and evolving cultural diversity. Our address these concerns.
ability to shape our own destiny can
be a model for countries looking to
enhance quality of life but maintain
their social cohesion.
aQ: Canada is a relatively new member of the Organization of American
States (OAS)–since 1989. How can the