Former heads of state from around the world have been invited to Colombia for a summit on the future of the country’s economic prosperity, Colombian media reported on Monday.
Important international figures from the world of politics have been invited to the “Third Way Summit” in Colombia’s Caribbean city of Cartagena on July 1 to discuss the future potential of the Colombian economy and society, according to Colombia’s W Radio.
The people invited include former US President Bill Clinton, ex-British Prime Minister Tony Blair, as well as former heads of state Felipe Gonzalez from Spain, Ricardo Lagos from Chile, and Fernando Henrique Cardoso from Brazil.
The summit will take place with the aim of re-introducing Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos’ “Third Way” development strategy, which has the aim of economic improvement, focusing on the relationship Colombia has with its existing trade partners and potential to build new ones in new parts of the world.
“We are going to hold a summit of the Third Way here in Colombia, in Cartagena. Five leaders that have had great success in their country in the generation of prosperity and the application of the principals of the Third Way, which are the principals that I am applying here in Colombia, are invited,” explained President Santos.
Santos first launched the idea of the Third Way at the beginning of his presidency in 2010. Rodrigo Rivera, leader of Santos’ first campaign, explained this strategy to Colombia’s Semana Magazine as “a pragmatic proposal that takes the best of liberal governments [States] or conservative [who defend the free market], but aside from ideologies.”
The idea of the Third Way was born in the United Kingdom as a revision of the hard-line conservatism of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. The initiative aimed to take the positives of liberal capitalism and of socialism to strike a balance between policies of social development and the free activity of private companies.
Santos himself described the initiative as, “the market as far as possible, the state when it’s necessary.”