Curiously optimistic in welcoming Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s election a year ago, Latin America will examine up close this week a leader it has admired from afar. It will do so with even keener interest in light of the oncoming U.S. presidency of Donald Trump.
In his first trip to the region as Prime Minister, Mr. Trudeau will meet with the newly elected presidents of Argentina and Peru who, like their regional leadership cohorts, share many of Mr. Trudeau’s priorities – “progressive” trade, environmental protection, social and financial inclusion, democratic renewal, compassionate immigration, human rights, multilateralism and indigenous integration.
The leaders also actively court increased Canadian investment and trade in all sectors, particularly in infrastructure and responsible mining. Latin America is the third largest destination for Canadian foreign investment. Canadian investment ranks in the top five among all foreign investors in each of the Pacific Alliance countries, including Peru, where Mr. Trudeau will be hosted by newly-elected President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.
Under Mr. Trudeau, Canada has found common cause with regional friends on climate change policies. It has also taken an active, behind the scenes role in trying to hammer out a multilateral solution to the intractable political, economic and social degradation occurring in Venezuela. Mexico appreciates Mr. Trudeau’s restoration of a strong bilateral relationship and his commitment to NAFTA.
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