This week, business and political leaders of the Pacific Alliance held their annual Summit in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. The Alliance—composed of Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru—aims to foster economic integration among member countries and other regions, with a special emphasis on Asia.  The presidents and ministers of member countries attended the Summit in Puerto Vallarta; and, reflecting efforts at “convergence” between the Pacific Alliance and Mercosur, so did the presidents of Brazil and Uruguay.  Notably absent was Mexico’s President-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who declined to attend until electoral results were ratified.

Last year, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Singapore joined the Alliance as associate members; this year South Korea and Ecuador also requested associate status. 

Despite the interest of Pacific Alliance countries in deeper integration with Asia, thus far China, the world’s second largest economy, has remained polite but largely aloof.  China expert Benjamin Creutzfeldt analyzes how China approaches its trade, investment, and lending decisions in Latin America and the degree to which the Alliance fits—or does not fit—in that larger strategy. 

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