US President
Joe Biden White House

President Joe Biden will host leaders from North and South America on Friday for the first Americas Partnership for Economic Prosperity Leaders' Summit.

According to the State Department, the meeting, which will take place in Washington D.C., will seek to "chart a path forward to tackle economic inequality, foster regional economic integration and good jobs, and restore faith in democracy by delivering for working people across the region."

Leaders from Barbados, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Uruguay will be in attendance. Countries with more protectionist policies like Argentina and Brazil won't be part of the group, but people familiar with the event's planning told Bloomberg that it's open for countries to join in the future.

The White House said that Biden's goal will be reaffirming the U.S.'s "commitment to work together with our partners to deepen economic integration in our hemisphere, drive more inclusive and sustainable economic growth, and tackle the underlying economic drivers of irregular migration in our hemisphere."

Migration has become a salient issue in Biden's domestic agenda, as border crossings reach new records and cities like New York warn about their impossibility to house those who arrive, even offering them one-way plane tickets to anywhere.

In fact, Biden had met with regional leaders in June of last year in Los Angeles at the "Summit of the Americas" to discuss the issue, among others. 20 countries from the region in attendance agreed to a set of measures to confront the migration crisis.

According to Customs and Border Protection data, over 3.2 million people arrived in the United States in fiscal year 2023, including people with a legal status and those apprehended for illegally crossing the border. Most of those who were apprehended were nationals of Western Hemisphere countries. Moreover, in September of this year, some 200,000 migrants crossed the U.S.-Mexico border, which set the record for most border crossings in a month.

Bloomberg reported that the White House envisions the summit as a platform that will reunite leaders every couple of years with ministerial work in between. "With the Biden administration unwilling to negotiate comprehensive tariff-lowering agreements with new partners, the focus is on building more resilient supply chains for things like lithium and computer chips," the outlet added.

Another official told CBS that leaders are expected to "establish three discrete tracks, in finance, trade and foreign affairs, for countries to quickly begin to set specific goals and the processes to start executing them.

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