Latin America: The End of An Era

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Winter 2006, Mark Weisbrot

This overview article by Mark Weisbrot was published in the International Journal of Health Services, volume 37, number 3. It looks at Latin America's political shift over the last several years. The author argues that these changes have largely been misunderstood and underestimated here for a number of reasons:

  • Latin America's unprecedented growth failure over the last 25 years is a major cause of these political changes and has not been well-understood
  • The collapse of the IMF's influence in Latin America, and middle-income countries, is also an epoch-making change
  • The availability of alternative sources of finance, most importantly from the reserves of the Venezuelan government, is very important
  • The increasing assertion of national control over natural resources is also an important part of the new relationship between Latin America and the United States

The author argues that for these and other reasons, the relationship between Latin America and the United States has undergone a fundamental and possibly irreversible change, and one that opens the way to new and mostly more successful economic policies.

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