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Central America Prosperity Project Kicks Off in Dallas
In September, the initial session of the George W. Bush Institute-SMU Economic Growth Initiative’s Central America Prosperity Project took place at the Bush Institute. The Project brings together experienced Central American leaders with the emerging generations of leaders for a series of focused discussions on the efforts the region has made over the past two decades, particularly in the context of the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), to find a path to sustained economic growth.
During the session, the group heard from key players like Luis Alberto Moreno, President of the Inter-American Development Bank, Dr. Kevin Casas, former Vice President of Costa Rica, and Robert Zoellick, former United States Trade Representative and President of the World Bank. President George W. Bush had an inspiring conversation with the group on the last day of the session.
"One of the hallmarks of our administration was that we recognized the prosperity of our neighborhood mattered to our own prosperity," said President George W. Bush. "When our neighbors flourished economically, America flourished economically. How do we keep that spirit alive during a period when the U.S. seems to be drifting towards isolationism and protectionism?"
Meet some of the Central America Prosperity Project participants:
Meet Guillermo Peña Panting from Honduras. @GuillermoP_HN reflects on #CAPP and why it's important for the Northern Triangle countries to come together to discuss the future of Central America: pic.twitter.com/R4MSbQ0Az8— George W. Bush Presidential Center (@TheBushCenter) September 7, 2018
"We coincide in principles. In principles of liberty, respect to the rule of law & justice...This is an excellent place to have a good conversation, but to do more than think. Also to act jointly." - Claudia Umaña on the Bush Institute working with the Northern Triangle countries pic.twitter.com/iviiliXSuK— George W. Bush Presidential Center (@TheBushCenter) September 6, 2018
Guatemala City resident Juan Carlos Paiz (@Juancarlospaiz) tells us how the Central America Prosperity Project is a productive way to collaborate with countries that share similar economic challenges. pic.twitter.com/7IaUaz7YGd— George W. Bush Presidential Center (@TheBushCenter) September 7, 2018
At the conclusion of the working group cycle, the Bush Institute will issue a recommendation paper that encourages the Northern Triangle governments, private sectors, and civil societies to pursue the remaining needed reforms. The group will convene again in early 2019 in Washington, D.C. to lay out a strategy and agenda for the future.
Sarah Gibbons serves as Senior Manager, Communications for the George W. Bush Presidential Center with a focus on the Bush Institute’s domestic initiatives.
Prior to joining the Bush Center, she worked with clients from Spain to promote wine, architecture and luxury goods in the U.S. market at Janet Kafka and Associates, a Dallas-based international marketing and public relations firm. Boynton also worked in Corporate Communications at Parkland Hospital as a media specialist.
She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin where she received a Bachelor of Journalism degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Hispanic Studies.Full Bio
Policy Recommendations: Our Role in Central America's Economic Growth
Reinforcing America's security through economic growth in Central America
Meet Guillermo Peña, a Honduran Saving His Country
Honduran and Central America Prosperity Project participant Guillermo Peña Panting is hopeful his country will one day be peaceful. He is a founder and board member for a public policy think tank in his home country, and is working to change Honduras and Central America. We sat down with Guillermo to learn more about his vision.