Latin America and the Caribbean
Latin America and the Caribbean region embrace a population of 560 million and an economy of 4.2 trillion U.S. dollars in GDP (three times that of ASEAN). The region enjoys growing economic presence in the world with an annual economic growth of approximately 5% in the past five years. The region has also been gaining greater international attention as suppliers of minerals including rare metals, energy and food.
Japan has traditionally had good relations with countries in Latin America and the Caribbean region, based on people-to-people links including those with Japanese immigrants and their descendents in the region. Moreover, Japan has supported the consolidation of democracy and economic development in Latin American and Caribbean countries, which has helped make its relations with such countries ever closer. In recent years, Latin American and the Caribbean countries have generally enjoyed stable democracies and steady economic growth based on the market economy, and they now have more influence in the international community. Today, the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean region, with which Japan shares fundamental values, have become important partners for Japan in the international community. Under these circumstances, in its efforts to further enhance relations with this region, Japan pursues its diplomacy toward this region based on three pillars: (i) strengthening economic relations, (ii) contributing to the stable development of the region, and (iii) promoting cooperation in the international arena.
To further strengthen Japan�s economic ties with Latin America and the Caribbean, the Japanese government, by accurately assessing the circumstances of Japanese companies and the local situations, supports the activities of such firms through the development of legal frameworks such as EPAs and bilateral investment agreements, as well as through consultations with host governments.
To realize stable development in Latin America and the Caribbean region, Japan actively supports the efforts of governments in the region to resolve deep-rooted problems of poverty and social inequality through financial assistance and technical cooperation. At the same time, Japan helps those governments pursue sustainable economic development.
Comprising 33 countries, the Latin American and Caribbean region has a significant influence over the decision-making at the UN and other international fora. Brazil, Mexico, and other emerging economies in particular have been increasingly important players in international politics and economics. Given this, the government of Japan works closely with the countries of this region in tackling global issues to which Japan attaches importance, such as the environment and climate change, nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, human security, and reform of the UN Security Council.