The Pacific Alliance: The Link Between Free Trade and Development

April 19 – October 7, 2022
In Latin America, a growth and development model based on increased competition and integration with the world has been gaining adherents in recent years as populist governments have been in retreat in the region.  The case of the Pacific Alliance is the best example of how regional integration, free trade and regulatory confluence are on the rise.  All of this as the United States seems to be turning back to a protectionist “America First” stance. How can Latin America and the Pacific Alliance react to this new reality? Several very experienced Latin American thinkers on the issues of trade and development will share their views on these timely questions. 

Ms. Karen Antebi
Ms. Karen Antebi serves as Economic Counselor for the Trade and NAFTA Office at the Embassy of Mexico in Washington, D.C. where she leads Mexico’s trade advocacy and communication strategies with the US Congress, Administration, and private sector. Before rejoining the Trade and NAFTA Office at the Embassy of Mexico in 2016, Karen spent the past three years at BSA |The Software Alliance leading the global license compliance advocacy program to encourage greater awareness of the importance of software compliance and digital risk among the C-Suite, governments and publicly listed companies. She also advocated on international trade and data issues, fair market access in government procurement, IP protection policies, and immigration reform. As Economic Counselor at the Embassy and, previously, as Chief of Staff to Mexico’s Deputy Secretary of Commerce, Karen has coordinated the interests of numerous departments and agencies at the highest levels of government in Mexico, the United States, the European Union, and abroad. She has a deep understanding of government decision-making processes and vast experience in setting a common agenda and securing support for specific policies from government agencies, trade associations, non-profit organizations, private sector leaders and members of the diplomatic community. Karen co-authored with Jaime Zabludovsky, “The Window to Europe: The Mexico–EU Free Trade Agreement” El Nuevo Milenio Mexicano. México: Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (2004). She is multicultural and bilingual.  Karen holds a BA from Brandeis University and an MA in International Policy Studies from Stanford University.

Mr. Rodrigo Contreras
Mr. Rodrigo Contreras is the Head of the Economic Department and Trade Commissioner at the Embassy of Chile in Washington, D.C. During his career, he has approached trade and integration policies from different perspectives: as a university professor, an international negotiator in bilateral, regional and multilateral processes (including TPP, TISA and the Pacific Alliance), a delegate in international organizations such as the OECD and the WTO, a legal counsel and advisor of the Government of Chile, a consultant at the Inter-American Development Bank and, currently, as the trade and economic commissioner of Chile in the United States. In his current position, he represents the economic and trade interests of Chile in the United States, including relations with the Administration, Congress, private sector, NGOs and multilateral organizations. In addition, his duties include promoting and facilitating exports of Chilean goods and services to the United States, attracting foreign direct investment to Chile and promoting Chile as a tourist, business and education destination. He holds a law degree from Universidad de Valparaiso (Chile) and an LL.M. from Georgetown University.

Mr. Eric Farnsworth
Mr. Eric Farnsworth has led the Washington office of the Council of the Americas and the Americas Society since 2003, during which time the stature and influence of the organization has grown significantly. He has played an important thought leadership and advocacy role across the broad range of issues affecting U.S. relations with the Western Hemisphere, including economic development, trade, and energy; Asia-Latin American relations and broader BRICS and global governance issues; security; and democracy. He is a widely sought-after conference speaker and media commentator, and has published articles and opinion pieces in numerous leading newspapers and policy journals. Farnsworth began his career in Washington with the U.S. Department of State after obtaining an MPA in international relations from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School. During his time in government he served in positions of increasing responsibility in the foreign policy and trade communities, from Western Hemisphere Affairs at State to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, culminating in a three and a half year appointment as the senior advisor to the White House special envoy for the Americas. In this capacity he played an important role in developing and implementing the Clinton administration’s policies toward the Western Hemisphere. He was awarded the Superior Honor Award three times. In between his government and nonprofit experiences, Farnsworth was managing director of ManattJones Global Strategies, a Washington and Los Angeles-based advisory and strategic consulting group. While there, he worked successfully to advance client interests particularly in the agriculture, auto, and technology sectors. Before coming to Washington he also worked in the global public policy division of Bristol-Myers Squibb, and in the U.S. Senate with Sam Nunn (D-GA) and the U.S. House of Representatives with John Edward Porter (R-IL). He also worked briefly at the U.S. Consulate in Johannesburg, South Africa. Eric Farnsworth is a Truman Scholar, an alumnus of the Leadership America, Young Leaders of the (NATO) Alliance, and the U.S.-Spain Young Leaders programs, and has participated by invitation on programs with the Atlantic Council, the Bertelsmann Foundation, the Carter Center, and the German Marshall Fund, among others. Previously he served as president of the Western Hemisphere Committee of the Greater Washington Board of Trade, a member of the Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on International Economic Policy, and a board member of Princeton in Latin America (PiLA). In 2016 he was decorated by the king and ambassador of Spain for his work to promote bilateral and regional relations. 

Mr. Antoni Estevadeordal
Mr. Antoni Estevadeordal, a Spanish citizen, joined the Bank in 1993 and is currently the Manager of the Integration and Trade Sector (Vice-Presidency of Sectors and Knowledge) at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). He has expertise in trade policy, economic integration and regional cooperation policies in Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and Europe. He has contributed to multiple Bank operations, in particular in the design of new programming instruments and financial products to support trade development and integration initiatives. He is responsible for managing the IDB operational portfolio, technical assistance programs and policy research on trade and integration. He coordinates several joint initiatives with key international institutions such as the WTO, OECD, WCO, WB, ADB, OAS, UN agencies among others. Before joining the IDB he taught at the University of Barcelona and Harvard University. He has published widely in major journals, including American Economic Review, Quarterly Journal of Economics, Review of International Economics, Journal of Economic Integration, and Journal of World Trade. He has also authored, contributed and edited several books, among others Beyond Borders: The New Regionalism in the Americas (IDB, 2002); Integrating the Americas: FTAA and Beyond (Harvard University Press, 2004); Regional Public Goods: From Theory to Practice (IDB-ADB, 2004); The Origin of Goods: Rules of Origin in Preferential Trade Agreements (Oxford University Press, 2006); The Emergence of China: Opportunities and Challenges for Latin America and the Caribbean (Harvard University Press, 2006); Gatekeepers of Global Commerce (IDB, 2008); Regional Rules and the Global Trading System (Cambridge University Press, 2009); Bridging Trade Agreements in the Americas (Harvard University Press, 2009); The Sovereign Remedy? Trade Agreements in a Globalizing World (Oxford University Press, 2009). He is currently working on a report on Asia and Latin America.
He holds a PhD in Economics from Harvard University and a BA in Economics from the University of Barcelona.

Ms. Barbara Kotschwar
Ms. Barbara Kotschwar is a Senior Private Sector Specialist in the Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice at the World Bank. She is regional contact point for Eastern and Southern Africa for the investment policy team and leads the investment policy and promotion (IPP) team work streams on international investment agreements, regional integration, and investment entry. From 2007 to 2015 she was Research Fellow with the Peterson Institute for International Economics, where her work focused on international trade policy, regional trade agreements and Latin American political economy.  Prior to that she was chief of the Foreign Trade Information System at the Organization of American States, where she also provided technical and analytical support to the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) process in the area of standards and technical barriers to trade in her capacity as senior trade specialist. She has advised Latin American and Caribbean governments on trade-related issues and has worked with multilateral and regional development banks on a variety of trade and development projects.  She is professor of Latin American studies and economics at Georgetown University, where she has taught courses on political economy and trade and integration in the Americas since 1998. She has a PhD from Johns Hopkins SAIS and undergraduate degrees in economics and political science from McGill University.  

The Honarable Ana M. Guevara
With extensive experience in international transportation, trade and development, the Honorable Ana M. Guevara is a respected figure in both government and business sectors.  She has been a former Vice President for two fortune 50 companies, small business owner, and U.S. Senate confirmed presidential appointee and high-level government official.  Her excellent track record of achievement is due to optimizing the nexus of international policy and business with social impact through strategic partnerships.  Multi-lingual, she has led numerous successful teams in multi-cultural situations. She has steered the formulation of tactical public policy and mediated before international organizations and government officials at the highest levels. Ana M. Guevara is President of AVENTI Associates, a strategic transportation, trade and development advisory firm.  Her vision is to help organizations be more successful in their global ventures by complimenting their business and operations with strategies that build strong local public and government support, leverage strategic partnerships, and invest in projects that contribute to social prosperity in the communities they serve. Previously, Ms. Guevara was a Vice President with UPS and Walmart.  She was appointed by the President of the United States to serve as the U.S. Alternate Executive Director to the World Bank Group, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Trade for Service Industries at the U.S. Department of Commerce, and Special Assistant for International Transportation and Trade in the Office of the U.S. Secretary of Transportation. Ms. Guevara is a Senior Advisor to the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).  She is a seasoned global public speaker with media and at public events. She received her Public and International Affairs Degree from The George Washington University.