U.S.-Mexico Foundation

MALI Founders Participate in High Level Economic Dialogue with VP Biden


Founders of the USMF Mexican American Leadership Initiative Participate in Bi-national Stakeholder Meeting, High Level Economic Dialogue, with Vice President Biden

Washington, D.C. – On Friday, September 20th, the U.S.-Mexico Foundation’s (USMF) Mexican American Leadership Initiative (MALI) was invited to participate in a conversation with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and secretaries of both governments as part of a gathering of stakeholders prior to the bi-national HLED meeting. The governments of the U.S. and Mexico recognize that only through broad public engagement can both countries achieve their economic and development goals.

The Hon. Henry Cisneros and José Villarreal, MALI Founders and members, represented MALI in the discussion aimed at proposing new policies and objectives to advance our competitiveness as a region.

“The fortunes of the U.S. and Mexico are inextricably linked. It is unimaginable that the U.S. can thrive without a successful Mexico and vice-versa. Until now, NAFTA has successfully made great strides in the areas of bi-national trade and investment, but we have ample opportunity to forge partnerships to advance human capital and the role of civil society in Mexico and in our two countries,” said the Honorable Henry G. Cisneros, USMF Trustee and former U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. 

José Villarreal, USMF Trustee, noted, “It is in the U.S.’ strategic interest for Mexico to be strong, prosperous, highly educated, and conversely, it is in Mexico’s strategic interest for the U.S. to continue to be one of the world’s dominant economic powers. The broad network of Americans of Mexican heritage in the U.S. is an effective bridge to ensure that both things happen.”

In May 2013, President Obama and President Peña Nieto announced the formation of the High Level Economic Dialogue to advance strategic economic and commercial priorities central to promoting mutual economic growth, job creation, and global competitiveness. The High Level Economic Dialogue will meet annually at the Cabinet level and will bring together leaders from the public and private sectors to build on and promote sustained progress on a range of existing successful bilateral dialogues and working groups.  Mexico and the United States have developed an initial work plan laying out potential areas for cooperation in economic development under three broad pillars: competitiveness and connectivity, economic growth, and regional and global leadership. The other important priorities for both governments are advancements in education, innovation and research.

In his remarks, Vice President Biden stated, “From Canada to the tip of Argentina, there is no reason why in the 21st century the hemisphere will not be the most potent economic engine in the world. But that won’t happen without Mexico, and that won’t happen without this North American engine gaining more power, more steam and more capacity.”


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