International trade opportunities between the United States and Guatemala

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This study highlighted the main trade opportunities between Guatemala and the United States, what Guatemala imports from the United States and the products exported from Guatemala. There are many advantages to having Guatemala as a trading partner and this study explains why. …

Introduction

International trade between Guatemala and the United States has been booming since the ratification of the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) in July, 2006. Today’s democratically elected Guatemalan government has a commitment to improving economic ties with the United States and other countries through mutually beneficial trade relationships. Economic development in Guatemala experienced renewed growth as a result of a stabilized political system starting in 1996. Prior to this time, Guatemala was in a state of civil war which was fully supported by the United States. In the years between 1950 and 1990, the U.S. supplied the Guatemalan army with guns, military training, and financial resources. This period in Guatemalan history is filled with much political conflict and civilian bloodshed. Despite the growing economy, Guatemala is still a very poor country with 56% of the roughly 12 million inhabitants living below the poverty line. During the civil war as many as 1 million people left Guatemala and took refuge in the United States. Today remittance from Guatemalans working in the U.S. brings an amount of money to the country equalling the value of two-thirds of all exports (Guatemala, 2008).
Half of the work force in Guatemala participates in the agriculture industry. The main exports are coffee ($473 million per year), fruits and nuts ($367 million per year), and sugar ($261 million per year) (International Trade Centre, 2005). Textiles, petroleum, perfumes, and other foods including plantains make up most of the other products exported from Guatemala. ...
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