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Over 500 top leaders gather in Cancun, Mexico

The World Economic Forum on Latin America is bringing together over 500 senior global leaders from business, politics, government, academia, civil society and the media from 46 countries.

Under the theme Securing a Place in an Uncertain Economic Landscape, the meeting is being co-hosted by the Government of Mexico under the patronage of President Felipe Calderón, who is participating in the event.

The meeting in Mexico will focus on discovering and highlighting business opportunities brought about by the successful execution of a priority reform agenda.

A globally attuned agenda that secures Latin America’s place in a shifting global landscape will be built around five core pillars:

  1. Global Trends and Economic Shifts
  2. Asia and Latin America Merging Business 
  3. Environment Growth through Critical Investments
  4. Enhancing Innovation in Business 
  5. Social Issues

The Co-Chairs of the meeting will be: José Sergio Gabrielli de Azevedo, President and Chief Executive Officer, Petroleo Brasileiro Petrobras, Brazil Alejandro Baillères, Chief Executive Officer, Grupo Nacional Provincial, Mexico Samuel A. DiPiazza Jr, Global Chief Executive Officer, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, USA José Antonio Fernández Carbajal, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, FEMSA, Mexico Guo Shuqing, Chairman, China Construction Bank, People's Republic of China William R. Rhodes, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Citibank, NA, Citi, USA.

Mexican President Felipe Calderón said: "Mexico has changed, economically, politically, and socially. Our country's economic stability is patently clear in many indicators; our democracy and political plurality is stronger than ever; but above all, we have legal instruments that lend absolute certainty to business relationships.

"Mexico's work force is young and well-trained. We have a logistical platform and outstanding geographic location, with access to 44 countries through trade agreements and treaties that bring us closer to a market of one billion potential consumers."

Economy Minister Eduardo Sojo said:  “Latin America is closing an important cycle of five years with annual GDP growth of over 5% and GDP per capita growth of over 3% per annum. This has allowed the region to reduce poverty, but clearly much more is needed. To continue these positive trends, the region needs to deepen its intercontinental ties and work more on different areas to address the slow regional interaction process.

"Maintaining internal peace, advancing institutional reforms, investing more in education, health and infrastructure, as well as supporting the productive sector rather than focusing on ideologies seem to be the main priorities for the regional leaders in the context of the uncertain global economic landscape,” said Emilio Lozoya Austin, Head of Latin America and Global Leadership Fellow, World Economic Forum.

In addition to the participation of President Felipe Calderón, there is strong engagement by key Mexican ministers and policy-makers including: Luis Téllez Kuenzler Secretary of Communications and Transport; Amalia Dolores García Medina, Governor of Zacatecas; Eduardo Sojo Garza-Aldape, Secretary of the Economy; José Natividad González Parás, Governor of Nuevo Leon; Agustin Carstens, Secretary of Finance; Enrique Peña Nieto, Governor of the State of Mexico; Georgina Kessel, Secretary of Energy; Patricia Espinosa Cantellano, Secretary of Foreign Relations; Juan Rafael Elvira Quesada Secretary of the Environment and Natural Resources; and Guillermo Ortiz, Governor of the Central Bank of Mexico.

From abroad, prominent public figures include: Karel De Gucht, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belgium; Jaques Wagner, Governor of Bahia, Brazil; Sérgio de Oliveira Cabral, Governor of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Ivan Ramalho, Vice-Minister of Foreign Trade of Brazil; Carlos Eduardo de Souza Braga, Governor of Amazonas, Brazil.

Also participating are: Luis Guillermo Plata, Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism of Colombia; Elias Antonio Saca, President of El Salvador; Angel Gurría, Secretary-General, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Paris; Manuel Zelaya Rosales; President of Honduras; Wang Jinzhen, Vice-Chairman, China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), People's Republic of China; Cao Yushu, Vice-Minister, Western Region Development Office of the State Council, People's Republic of China; Patrick Manning, Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago; José Miguel Insulza, Secretary-General, Organization of American States (OAS), Washington DC; Luis A. Moreno President, Inter-American Development Bank, Washington DC; Thomas A. Shannon Jr, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, US Department of State, USA; Álvaro Colom Caballeros, President of Guatemala; Oscar Arias Sánchez, President of Costa Rica; Roger H. Schjerva, Deputy Minister of Finance of Norway; and Fernando Araújo Perdomo, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia.

The World Economic Forum is an international institution committed to improving the state of the world through public-private cooperation in the spirit of global citizenship. It engages with business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.

Incorporated as a not-for-profit foundation in 1971 and headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, the Forum is independent, impartial and not tied to any interests. It cooperates closely with all leading international organizations (