Apr 20, 2018
At the first Summit of the Americas, member states issued a Declaration of Principles, in which this body agreed to work together to advance the prosperity and democratic values, as well as institutions and security in the hemisphere.
“The United States,” said Vice President Mike Pence in a speech at the Summit of the Americas, “is proud to stand with free nations across this hemisphere in pursuit of these noble goals.”
The Western Hemisphere, said the Vice President, was always meant to be a hemisphere of freedom. As the charter of the Organization of American States declares, "the historic mission of America is to offer... a land of liberty."
“Like the citizens of your nations,” said Vice President Pence, “the people of the United States seek a future of opportunity and prosperity. That's why, in America. . .we've been unleashing our boundless natural resources, and quite recently President Trump signed the largest tax cuts and tax reform in American history.”
At the same time, the United States is interested in pursuing trade relationships that are fair and reciprocal. While the United States trades nearly three times as much with its neighbors in the Western Hemisphere as it does in China, there is still tremendous opportunity to forge stronger and more balanced trade relationships across the region.
The U.S. has already taken action to reach new deals and update existing agreements. Indeed, the United States is working very closely with Canada and Mexico to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement. “We believe we are fairly close to a deal, and we're going to be working earnestly to make that a reality for all of our nations,” declared Vice President Pence.
Beyond trade, the United States will continue to share its traditions of entrepreneurship throughout the region. For example, through the new "2X Women's Initiative," the United States will invest an unprecedented $150 million to support women entrepreneurs throughout Latin America.
All these steps, said Vice President Pence, “will strengthen the prosperity for the people of the United States, and strengthen prosperity across this region.”