We are pleased to present a summary overview of the Inter-American Dialogue’s work in 2004. The Dialogue has become an increasingly visible and influential presence in Washington and in Latin America. No other non-governmental institution has more effectively engaged the U.S. Congress on hemispheric affairs, or is more regularly quoted in the U.S. and Latin American media about inter-American issues. This year, former president of Brazil Fernando Henrique Cardoso and former U.S. trade representative Carla Hills chaired a Dialogue task force that produced “Agenda for the Americas 2005,” a widely cited report offering recommendations to revitalize U.S. policy toward Latin America and the Caribbean.
The Dialogue’s extensive work on Colombia and Venezuela provides authoritative and balanced policy assessments of the challenges confronting those countries. Our forums and publications on remittances have broken new ground. We are an active voice in debates about Haiti and Cuba—and have helped keep Washington consistently well-informed about developments in Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico. We have worked for several years to keep issues of press freedom, media responsibility, and access to information on the agenda—both in Washington and throughout the region. The Dialogue is shaping policy and action on educational reform in many countries. We are also working hard to focus attention on the hemispheric trade agenda—and to seek bipartisan support for U.S. economic cooperation with Latin America and the Caribbean.
We are grateful for the support of a wide circle of friends, associates, corporate partners, and public and private donors, which is vital to sustain the Inter-American Dialogue’s work and its efforts to improve the quality of debate and decision making in hemispheric affairs and to build stronger cooperation in the Americas.
We look forward to an even more intense set of activities in 2005.