Open regionalism and economic integration
Fuentes, Juan Alberto
Includes bibliographyEconomic integration in Latin America has entered upon a new stage, conditioned by new development strategies undertaken mostly by democratically elected governments, and directed at adjusting to a changed and increasingly demanding world economy, while attempting simultaneously to increase the Latin American countries' competitiveness. In the first section of this paper, the "stylized facts" of this new stage of economic integration are briefly reviewed, after which an explanation is given, in section II, of the main determinants of the significant growth of reciprocal trade and investment flows within the region that has taken place in the 1990s. Section III then explores the meaning of "Open Regionalism", a proposal put forward by ECLAC regarding economic integration in the region in the present circumstances. In the final section of the article, some of the obstacles likely to be faced by economic integration in the future are identified.