We live in a world in which emerging economies are the protagonists in the global transformation. According to statistical information the world's population has increased by nearly 2.5 billion people over the last three decades. Over 90 percent of that growth has occurred in developing countries.
This reality is more pronounced when one considers that emerging economies have gone from representing just over 30 percent of global GDP thirty years ago to close to 46 percent today. Without a doubt, China and India are behind that story.
But beyond the Dragon and the Elephant of the East, there is another great transformation that is often overlooked, the one that has taken place in Latin America. Not for nothing does Luis Alberto Moreno, president of the Inter-American Development Bank, predict that this will be the region's decade. President Pinera of Chile, even more enthusiastic, proclaims that it will be our century.
These are not fantasies but an undeniable reality. We are a region of nearly 600 million people with a significant youth demographic, as seen in the median age of 27. We have a vibrant, enterprising and industrious middle class that accounts for about 62 percent of our population. Last, but not least, the average per-capita income is close to $9,000. These various indicators do not exist in a vacuum and have been accompanied by incontrovertible social achievements. We have increased life expectancy to age 75; reduced infant mortality by half; increased the reach of water networks to more than 80 percent in rural and urban areas; raised literacy rates above 95 percent; and expanded connectivity and public services.
These achievements have not been attained by chance. On the contrary, they reflect an orderly progression in which the major economies of the region--such as Brazil Mexico, Chile, Colombia, Peru and Uruguay--have pledged without hesitation to follow the commandments of common sense. The consolidation of a true liberal democracy in which security, individual freedoms, social cohesion, independent institutions and citizen participation take precedence set the foundation of this construction.
Creating an institutional opening for investment; realizing an inclusive and sustainable...