U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly convened the Conference on Prosperity and Security in Central America, in partnership with the Government of Mexico, at Florida International University and U.S. Southern Command HQ, in Miami, Florida, on June 15 and 16. The event brought together business and government leaders from the United States, Mexico, Central America, and other countries to address the economic, security, and governance challenges in the Northern Triangle countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. Together, we are combating the root causes of illicit activities that threaten regional stability and removing obstacles to economic growth, including barriers to trade and investment for U.S. businesses.
The conference underscored our commitment to the Northern Triangle and recognized that it will take strong leadership from the United States, Mexico, and other partners to tackle the economic, security, and governance challenges facing the region. It is also was an opportunity for Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras to demonstrate their commitment to creating conditions that promote sustainable economic growth and improving security and governance. Through their plan, the Alliance for Prosperity, these three countries have made important strides on this path, and we encourage them to take further concrete action in support of these efforts.
In his keynote address, Vice President Pence said, “Together, we will build on the foundation of friendship between our lands and between our people. Together, we will reach new heights of safety and security, of peace and prosperity.”
In his keynote address on June 15, Vice President Pence said, “Together, we will build on the foundation of friendship between our lands and between our people. Together, we will reach new heights of safety and security, of peace and prosperity.”
The first day of the conference identified policies to jumpstart investment in the region, promote economic growth, and improve conditions for U.S. companies operating in the Northern Triangle. The U.S., Mexican, and Central American private sectors are an important part of these discussions, and business leaders from throughout the region are crucial as we seek to identify and overcome the obstacles to economic growth.
Day 2 of the conference, on June 16 at the Southern Command headquarters (SOUTHCOM), focused on regional security cooperation and improving citizen security and rule of law. We are mobilizing the international community to demonstrate its commitment to confronting the shared challenges we face in the region.
As Secretary Tillerson said, “A secure and prosperous Central America contributes to a safer, more prosperous United States and Western Hemisphere. The United States recognizes the region as an important area in our foreign policy agenda, and we welcome this opportunity today to work together to create the prosperity we all want and start solving the problems that are obstacles.”
About the Authors: Donald Jacobson serves as Director of the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs’ Office of Central American Affairs, and Richard Glenn serves as Director of the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs’ Office of Western Hemisphere Programs.
Editor's Note: This entry is also published on Medium.com/StateDept.
For More Information:
- Secretary Tillerson’s Remarks at the Conference for Prosperity and Security in Central America Opening Plenary Session
- Vice President Pence’s Remarks at the Conference on Prosperity and Security in Central America
- Secretary Tillerson’s Remarks at the Joint Press Avail at the Conference on Prosperity and Security in Central America
- White House Statement on the Conference on Prosperity and Security in Central America and the 47th General Assembly of the Organization of American States