The maturation of a region

The beginning of the second millennium brought an effervescent trend for creating cooperative and integrating treaties in Latin America. Thus, the following treaties were created: IIRSA (2000), ALBA (2004), Unasur (2008), CELAC (2011) and the Pacific Alliance (2011); these agreements authorize affiliations in exclusively developing countries in all these cases. Although the original proposals of these treaties are diverse, ranging from the merely commercial focus in the Pacific Alliance to the political-ideological concentration in ALBA; these initiatives are a clear sign of the maturity of a region that wishes to consecrate their own political, commercial, and social spaces, and thus, increasingly independent from developed economies.

As the entire chain for change intrinsically originated in the Southern Hemisphere, that corporate trend has encountered a pathway full of challenges; first of all, based on the definition of its own operating model. The dilemma for replicating the format for complete European integration, as Mercosul tried to apply in (1991) and CAN in (1969), or better yet, beginning a structure focused on impelling commercial relations, as practiced by the Pacific Alliance. According to the example from international experience, these regional integration and cooperative initiatives are facing difficulties in materializing without financial backing to facilitate the execution of macro programs agreed to by countries. These good initiatives for achieving progress in infrastructure, agriculture, industrialization, science, technology, or innovation require financial backing in order to achieve these objectives.

These spaces have been occupied by multilateral development banks, constituted to close these financial gaps. Thus, the Development Bank for Latin American — CAF was created and it created a successful and differentiated operational model. The CAF, as it is commonly known in Latin America was created in 1970 as a development bank for the Andes region, and it has grown significantly in the last decades, counting on 19 members in 2016, 17 of them are on the Latin American subcontinent. The main characteristic of the institution is not the existence of donor countries, but in other words, shareholding nations that work together mutually and simultaneously. Although this condition could generate perverse incentives among the administration of the institution; in CAF successful governance was constructed among the shareholding countries in order to avoid destroying the autonomy management of the administration. This Latin American essence of CAF has been the key to its accelerated growth, making it possible for it to accumulate a portfolio of USD$ 20,759 million dollars and approve USD$ 12,203 million dollars in 2015, contributing to the development process in Latin America.

Latin America decided to incorporate the integrational and cooperative chain to invade the current world scenario. This region faces a series of very important challenges ahead of it, such as improving governability, commercial facilitation, connectivity, or fighting poverty and insecurity. All these challenges have a transnational connotation and the deepening of the integrated process will be a natural path for overcoming these challenges in a strongly globalized world. In this context, CAF has a great deal to contribute, not only financially, considering the adverse economic status of the region, but also in diffusing a multilateral effective and competitive administrative and management model.

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