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Cablegate: Andean Community Secgen Wagner's Proposals To

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.



E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: LIMA 4773

1. Andean Community of Nations (CAN) Secretary General Allan
Wagner hosted a colloquium entitled: "Andean Community
External Relations: International Insertion with Social
Inclusion" on 11/15, at which he presented his vision for
CAN's foreign relations role. Wagner argued that the time
and environment are right for a new agenda focused on three
broad themes: democracy and social inclusion; commerce and
productive development; and regional security and energy

2. With respect to the U.S., Wagner proposed a new agenda
focused on developing social cohesion/inclusion, combating
transnational crime, and promoting energy cooperation. (Note:
Though the message was generally the same, in a prior meeting
between Ambassador Struble and Wagner (Reftel), Wagner
organized the three major areas of dialogue with the U.S. as
drugs, terrorism, and energy security. End Note.) The CAN
SecGen also stressed the need for increased cooperation and
progress on a free trade agreement with the EU, as well as
enhanced relations with South Korea, Japan, China, and India.
Throughout the presentation, he emphasized the need to
promote social cohesion and inclusion while promoting
commerce and productive development.

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3. Much of the discussion following Wagner's speech dealt
with panelists' and audience members' concern that Venezuelan
President Hugo Chavez's policies and actions have created a
"crisis" for the CAN. Former Minister of the Interior Gino
Costa and others expressed skepticism about Wagner's
optimistic presentation, noting that Venezuela's approach to
economic and foreign policy issues conflicts with those of
its CAN partners and makes coherent CAN engagement with the
U.S. impossible. Another recurring comment from the
participants was that despite making progress at the
macroeconomic level, poverty and excluded populations remain
serious problems, and, as a result, increased emphasis on
social inclusion is needed.

4. COMMENT: Wagner clearly wants to enhance the CAN's role
in the Andean region's relations with key countries, but his
proposals are long on goals, short on details, and vague as
to what value-added the CAN can bring to the table. He
continues to be reluctant to address the problems that
Chavez's Venezuela poses for the CAN as an institution, as
well as for that organization's ability to serve as an
interlocutor with the U.S. END COMMENT.

5. Post is faxing a copy of Wagner's presentation to WHA/AND.

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