President Juan Manuel Santos says Colombia’s relationship with the United States “has never been better” after meeting with U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden for two and a half hours on Monday morning.
In the meeting, the pair covered issues touching on energy, education, environment, business and security, President Santos revealed in a press statement on Monday afternoon.
The main novelty to result from the meeting is Biden’s communication of the United States’ desire to be an observing party in the Pacific Alliance, a trade bloc of Colombia, Mexico, Chile and Peru which a long line of nations including Guatemala, Spain and Japan are also reportedly interested in joining.
“Colombia will without a doubt support such a request and we will put the proposal to the rest of the countries” was Santos’ reply.
The head of state took the opportunity to mark the 13 years that have passed since Biden last came to Colombia, then as a senator in a delegation of former President Bill Clinton, which marked the beginning of Plan Colombia, which saw the U.S. take an active role in providing aid to Colombia in its then near out of control armed conflict.
Santos was quick to point out the differences in today’s meeting, recalling a quote made by the U.S. vice-president in the buildup to the official visit, saying he wasn’t coming to Colombia “with the attitude of what [the U.S.] can do for Latin America, rather what we can do with them.”
While Santos stressed the strength of the relationship between the two countries, the head of state indicated there remains room for improvement in the international relations. “As in every relationship, we can always achieve more, and that is the target that our two countries will work towards,” he concluded before wishing Joe Biden and his wife well on the rest of their mini tour of Latin America, with scheduled visits to Brasil and Trinidad and Tobago.