In UN speech, Lasso says economic growth and job creation can solve mass migration in Latin America

Sep 22, 2021 | 14 comments

In his first address to the United Nations General Assembly, President Guillermo Lasso said that economic cooperation between countries is necessary to end the waves of migrants circulating in Latin America. “Tragedies are playing out daily as millions of people are looking for better economic opportunities and better lives,” he said. “We see this most markedly in the millions of Venezuelans seeking new beginnings and in the thousands attempting to cross the border to the United States.”

President Guillermo Lasso addressed the United Nations on Tuesday.

The countries affected by the migrations must work together to find solutions, he said. “We need to cooperate to find solutions which must include bringing sustainable markets closer to the people instead of forcing them to migrate to other markets,” he said. “In my country, we face the same challenge as tens-of-thousands of my countrymen are leaving to find opportunity elsewhere. Many, unfortunately see this as an act of survival.”

Lasso also appealed to more prosperous nations of the UN to help Latin American nations support the migrants. “We estimate there are 433,000 Venezuelan migrants in Ecuador and we struggle to provide them services. We need the world to step up, as it has in the Middle East, to help us with this humanitarian crisis.”

“Unfortunately, this human drama is not new for those of us who are part of the Latin American continent,’ he added. “But for this very reason we have not remained indifferent to the departure of millions of Venezuelan nationals from their homeland.”

In promoting what he calls a “new economic model,” Lasso said there must be more free trade between nations, but free trade that benefit the poor as well as the wealthy. “We must integrate and stimulate markets to provide work and housing close to where people live,” he said. “Our goals should not be simply to supply cheaper goods to the most prosperous nations.”

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Lasso also cited Ecuador’s success in its vaccination program, noting that the country ranks first in Latin America in vaccinating the elderly and those with chronic health conditions. “Our rate of infection is now one of the lowest in the Western Hemisphere and it is a reflection of our resolve to effectively vaccinate large numbers in the shortest possible time.”




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