The three bilateral Chambers of Commerce active in Belgium with Chile, Colombia and Peru, approached AGORIA for proposing to organize in the Diamant Center, and with the support of a Chilean company BC&MC, an information seminar about the Pacific Alliance and its four economies.

The fourth one, Mexico which has no Chamber of Commerce in Brussels, was associated with the presence of Promexico, its commercial Office present in Brussels. AGORIA supported the initiative and expects to benefit further from the bilateral Chambers of Commerce for developing specific tailor-made analysis for those AGORIA members who would wish to address their questions or needs as regards their projects about the Latin American Pacific coast.

Indeed, the Pacific Alliance areas (presently limited to four members, Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru) appears as a sustainable success story, presenting a stable and dynamic growing area which offers especially interesting prospects for many AGORIA members.

The seminar gathered a broad range of experts coming from these countries as well as from the three local Chambers, from the European Commission, from AWEX and Brussels Invest & Export, and from Promexico. The presentations covered the main issues of interest for Belgian companies, from the description of this large free-trade area to macroeconomic, fiscal and legal features of its members. The seminar draw the attention upon two major facts: 1) in a very short period (less than four years), these economies were able to establish almost a single market for more than 92% of their trade – an amazing success which contrasts with the rest of Latin America still weakened by economic nationalism and traditional protectionist policies; 2) these four economies present the best performance and future prospects of the region, being more stable both macro-economically and politically, while the other sub-regions in Latin America are again back to lower growth prospects with the end of exceptionally favorable conditions they benefitted from 2003 to 2012 but which were exogenous and non-reproducible.

Christian Ghymers
President of the Belgian-Chilean
Chamber of Commerce