PES and GPF launch initiative to strengthen Europe -Latin America relations

28/04/2017

Chile conference

From 27 to 29 April, PES Deputy Secretary General Marije Laffeber and PES Women President Zita Gurmai joined the Global Progressive Forum delegation taking part in a conference to strengthen the partnership between Europe and Latin America.

The delegation was led by S&D MEPs Enrique Guerro, and the conference wasinitiated by the GPF and newly elected President of the Partido Socialista in Chile, Álvaro Elizalde.

During the opening of the conference, Chilean President Michele Bachelet underlined common challenges and steps to take in the field of social justice, equality and sustainability.

Bachelet said:

"The EU and Latin American countries share deep-rooted and historical bonds that bring them close together. We are the two most like-minded regions in the world. We have common values and principles, and a strong belief in effective multilateralism. In an increasingly complicated world, the positive example of our partnership is very much needed."

In her opening remarks, Marije Laffeber said:

"The world is facing multiple challenges and we see that many citizens are disappointed.

"Our shared objective should be to translate our common values and principles into an example to bring about positive change around the world. Thus we can truly be an example of freedom and democracy.

"For a long time, parties in Latin America have found inspiration in European social democracy. However, now we're here to seek inspiration with our friends in the southern states of Latin America, in particular with our friends from sister parties in Chile, Argentina and Uruguay."

PES Women president Zita Gurmai applauded advances in the field of gender equality achieved by the Bachelet government.

The PES argues that relations between the EU and CELAC cannot solely based on trade and the economy. We are facing big challenges, from climate change to nuclear non-proliferation and countering terrorism. We have to deepen our political dialogue, starting from our common values and principles.

In the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals, we must struggle together to eradicate poverty, reduce inequalities, improve environmental and socio-economic sustainability and maintain the rule of law.

The conference was co-organised by the Global Progressive Forum, the Salvador Allende Foundation and the Instituto Igualdad. It was attended by, among others, senators Isabel Allende, Juan Palo Letelier and S&D MEPs Enrique Guerro (GPF President), Constanze Krehl and Immaculada Rodriguez.