ABD convenes Plenary Meeting to discuss progress on the road to the IX Summit of the Americas

A Plenary Meeting of the Americas Business Dialogue (ABD) was held on December 15, 2021 in a hybrid setting with more than 150 attendees. The meeting’s objectives were to review the main takeaways of the working group documents, evaluate the process of aligning the identified priorities to the Summit themes and asses the tentative timeline.

In August 2021, United States Government announced that it will host the IX Summit of the Americas in “Summer 2022” and has begun several preparatory activities, including fostering stakeholder consultation and convening meetings of the Summit Implementation Review Group (SIRG). The proposed theme for the IX Summit of the Americas is “Building a Sustainable, Resilient, and Equitable Future”.

In preparation for the upcoming Summit, ABD’s working groups have made progress in developing documents and outlining priorities and policy recommendations which include the identification of baselines, indicators, and opportunities for public-private engagement. The meeting provided an opportunity for the ABD Secretariat to update members and stakeholders of recent developments, including:
• ABD's working groups put together individual documents that outline the priority areas they wish to address, identifying close to 50 recommendations and more than 175 individual policy actions addressed at governments.
• The Secretariat has reviewed all of the drafts, noting the importance of consolidating these into fewer high-level messages that have the appropriate vision and ambition to be considered by Heads of State, as well as identifying opportunities for private sector engagement in the Summit process.

Moreover, members were provided an opportunity to comment on the main takeaways from the policy papers developed by the working groups as well as proposed activities, highlighting the importance of:
• Preserving the value and substance of recommendations and content of the policy papers, as they can be a valuable complement for engagement at the technical level to the Leader’s document.
• Active engagement with chairs and members and a clear process to understand the prioritization of the high-level messages.
• Strategic and prompt dissemination of ABD’s recommendations with policymakers on the ground at the local and regional levels to drive awareness.
• Consider the current context of supply chain disruptions, high freight costs, Nearshoring or Allyshoring, and that value chain opportunities that exist in the region
• Relevance in the region, particularly in Central America of recommendations related to transparency and the rule of law.
• Importance of promoting inclusive trade implementation, underserved populations (women, minorities, indigenous populations, MSMEs). It was agreed that the Secretariat would put together a consolidated draft of the Leader’s document, to be circulated to members for review and comments in preparation of a plenary meeting in early 2022, during which members may finalize the drafting and adopt the document.

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