Telephonic Press Briefing with Kenneth T. Cuccinelli, Senior Official Performing the Duties of Acting Deputy Secretary at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and Mark A. Morgan, Acting Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection
U.S. policy objectives in Guatemala include:
-Protecting U.S. citizens and the Homeland, dismantling transnational criminal organizations and gangs, and increasing citizen security in Guatemala;
-Engaging Guatemalan government institutions to fight corruption, increasing openness and transparency, supporting rule of law, and strengthening the effectiveness of government institutions to improve Guatemalan confidence in government agencies;
-Reducing illegal migration and illicit trafficking of goods and people to the United States by boosting broad-based economic growth, addressing the economic drivers of migration, and engaging the government and the private sector to reduce poverty;
-Promoting an America First policy by improving goods and services export and investment opportunities for U.S. firms.
U.S. Assistance to Guatemala
The U.S. Strategy for Central America (Strategy) guides U.S. diplomatic efforts and foreign assistance in the region. The Strategy is a bipartisan, multi-year U.S. government plan covering all seven Central American countries (Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama). The Strategy aims to secure U.S. borders and protect American citizens by addressing the security, governance, and economic drivers of illegal migration and transnational crime, while increasing opportunities for U.S. and other businesses.
Bilateral Economic Relations
The United States is one of Guatemala’s largest trading partners. The two countries are parties to the Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR), which aims to facilitate trade and investment, as well as further regional integration by eliminating tariffs, opening markets, reducing barriers to services, and promoting transparency. CAFTA-DR contains a chapter on investment similar to a bilateral investment treaty with the United States. U.S. exports to Guatemala include oil, agricultural products, articles donated for relief and low-value shipments, and machinery. U.S. imports from Guatemala include agricultural products, apparel, gold, and silver.