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Biden In Colombia

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, third from right, waves to reporters accompanied by his wife Jill Biden, third from left, two of their granddaughters and Colombia's Foreign Minister Maria Angela Holguin, second from left, after their arrival to a military airport in Bogota, Colombia, Sunday, May 26, 2013.

The United States’ relationship with Colombia reflects a new reality.

The United States, said Vice President Joe Biden, is not looking at Latin America in the spirit of what the United States can do for Latin America, but what the United States can do with Latin America. This is particularly true of Colombia, as the Vice President pointed out on his recent trip to Bogota.

Biden In Colombia
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Referring to the peace talks between the FARC and the Colombian government, Vice President Biden said, “you’ve reclaimed your nation from civil war. You’ve taken this country further and faster than many dared hope was even possible. And now as conflicts begin to recede, Colombia is embracing a new mission, and that is locking in your economic security gains that gave you so much to win and start building a just and durable peace.”

The United States’ relationship with Colombia reflects this new reality. In 2010, the United States and Colombia launched the High-Level Partnership Dialogue, a framework to discuss economic development; social and economic inclusion; human rights, democracy, and good governance; energy; science and technology; environmental protection and climate change; and culture and education.

The United States supports the efforts of the nations of the region to integrate with the global economy to the greatest extent possible. That’s why the United States endorsed Colombia’s accession to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

And just last year, the U.S.-Colombian Trade Promotion Agreement entered into force. Already, United States exports to Colombia are up 20 percent and Colombia has greater and permanent access to the largest market in the world.

As the countries of Latin America grow and develop, the demand for energy will continue to increase. For that reason, the United States and countries like Colombia are sharing expertise on integrating renewable energy, implementing smart grid technology, and developing unconventional oil and gas resources.

Under the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas, the United States and Colombia are working together on the Colombian-led initiative Connecting the Americas 2022 to support the development of regional energy markets and ensure that the people across the hemisphere have access to reliable, affordable, cleaner sources of electricity.

The United States applauds Colombia's progress and looks forward to continued cooperation with one of our closest partners in the hemisphere.