From: Pedro Pablo Marroquin (LH) [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Monday, March 02, 2015 07:13 PM
To: Spector, Stephen; Pietranton, Kelsey; Goodman, Meghan
Subject: VPOTUS pool report 1
Guatemala City, March 2nd 2015.
In a packed news conference at the National Palace of Culture in Guatemala City, the presidents of Guatemala (Otto Perez Molina), El Salvador (Salvador Sanchez Ceren) and Honduras (Juan Orlando Hernandez), along with the U.S. Vice - President Joe Biden, offered a joint statement within the framework of the Northern Triangle Alliance for.
First, Guatemalan president Otto Perez Molina began stating:
“Immigration is a top priority to our counties because our population has been in the need to immigrate seeking for better opportunities making it almost in an obligation.”
“In Guatemala, the lack of economic opportunities is one of the main reasons of immigration, and for El Salvador and Honduras, violence and lack of opportunities are one of the top reasons.”
We’ve developed an immediate and inclusive plan to deal with the humanitarian crisis of unaccompanied children in US borders, with the support of U.S. Vice-president Joe Biden, to prevent immigration and create opportunities.”
The president of El Salvador, Salvador Sanchez Ceren, added:
“We’ve identified beneficiaries and scopes of the work of four components such as: energizing the productive sector, developing opportunities for human capital, working on security and access to justice in order to increase the confidence in institutions.”
He also stated that his country has presented a legislation to stabilize and secure foreign investments.
The President of Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernandez said each country must to address its responsibility regarding drug trafficking.
“In Honduras we are not drug consumers” he said. “For the U.S. this is a health problem, for us it is a life or death issue, but we’ve reached agreements so that’s why we are working on this alliance.”
U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden:
“It’s good to be here with folks who are becoming good friends.”
“We´re gathered here because we are united in a simple shared belief: As long as politics exist there’s no reason why Central America can’t become the next great success story in the Western hemisphere”.
“We’ve recognized our responsibilities, you’ve recognized yours.”
“You have to end for once all violence and poverty.”
“We the U.S. are ready to make an investment, that’s why the Alliance is very important because it recognizes the needs of the moment. This is the time that it will be different.” he said.
“Do we continue to mitigate the problems or we attempt to solve the problems?”
“Every task should be backed up with action”
“They‘ve (the presidents of the three countries) committed to reform and have given themselves deadlines.”
To Congress: this is the moment, he added.
You know better than I do, the work that needs to be done to make the courts, the government, the contracting, the tax collection come to be perceived as fare and transparent, because the truth is they are not perceived that way right now.
Victims of crime need to know criminals will face justice, citizens and business need to believe that the legal system works for them not against them.
“We know strong judicial institutions aren’t built overnight, we face similar challenges back home, that’s why the work of organizations like the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala are so important. One idea I’d like for all of us to consider is asking the United States to stand up a regional body.
“It´s awful hard to convince companies to invest when your own companies don’t invest and they are investing abroad”.
“It remains too costly. As you take proper steps, we the U.S. are ready to do our part. Nothing is more effective than your actions.”
“We’re working to help this year because we need to show results” he said.
It won’t be easy, but we can get this done. Colombia is transformed just as you can be in 10 to 15 years if we get this right.
Central America can be become the embodiment of this hemisphere remarkable rise.
We will benefit as much as you, this is in our mutual best interest, he ended up saying.
Inter-American Development Bank President, Luis Alberto Moreno, key quotes:
“The bank supports the Northern Triangle Alliance for Prosperity with enthusiasm. We’ve put all our experience and all of our teams and resources at disposal to the sobering leadership of these three countries to help in whatever it is necessary. And here today, we reiterate our commitment”
“This is not just another plan of the region. In has leadership: the three presidents have worked together to design a plan to coordinate it. It has compromise, given the fact that resources of each of the three countries have been destined to finance the plan. It has good partners: the support of the United Stated, Mexico, Chile, Colombia, among others”.
“The North Triangle is the best-kept secret in Latin America and the Caribbean. They are three economies that gather almost 30 million people, making it the seventh biggest nation, in terms of population, the ninth economy and ninth biggest exporter of Latin America”
Vanessa Rubio, the Mexican Sub secretary for Latin America Affairs finished up the press conference adding that “Mexico is committed with the prosperity of the countries of the Northern Triangle” and will cooperate with the United States, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras.