Welles Orr Comments on DR-CAFTA in the Inter-American Dialogue's Latin America Advisor
"How Successful Has DR-CAFTA Been in the Past Five Years?"Latin America Advisor
Welles Orr discusses the success of DR-CAFTA, saying "As the Obama administration and the new Congress forge ahead in a bipartisan way to finally enact implementing legislation for the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement and reach agreement in moving the long-stalled Colombia and Panama FTAs too, they would be smart to look at the success of the DR-CAFTA agreement, both for trade with the United States as well as trade between the seven signatory countries. Since that agreement was signed in 2006 with El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua, with the Dominican Republic in 2007 and with Costa Rica in 2009, significant gains from increased trade and investment have had an extremely positive impact on each of these growing, developing countries… All countries are seeing increased trade in agricultural and nonagricultural sectors—U.S. trade with DR-CAFTA countries in bananas, coffee, sugar and fresh fruit is now dwarfed by trade in apparel, machinery and optical and medical equipment. Perhaps the biggest plus of the agreement has been the positive inflows of foreign direct investment, with all six countries seeing exponential growth."