Visa requirements will be eliminated for citizens of Pacific Alliance nations traveling to each other’s countries, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos announced Wednesday.
“[We are] eliminating visas for citizens of member countries of the Pacific Alliance. That means that Colombians are not going to have to have visas to travel to Chile or Peru or Mexico. That will be done in the coming months,” Santos said at the end of the Fourth Summit of the Pacific Alliance, held this week in the Chilean city of Antofagasta.
Santos also said that the countries would increase information sharing to prevent illegal immigration, particularly with regards to criminals evading justice.
“We will deepen what is already underway, which is the real-time exchange of all migration data of criminals who are using the borders to commit their crimes. Authorities in Mexico, Colombia, Chile and Peru will intensify this process of information exchange in real time to better control the migration of criminals among countries,” said Santos.
The Colombian head of state spoke on the increased economic cooperation of the alliance, which will include joint operations to improve foreign investment.
“We will coordinate to promote our exports and encourage foreign investment in our countries (…) today it was decided that the four countries: Chile, Peru, Mexico and Colombia, would set up a joint office of the four countries of the Alliance in Instanbul for this purpose,” he said.
The four Pacific Alliance countries will also have closer trade relations. “Any product with raw materials of any member of the Alliance, will be considered a domestic product and as such will not have any restrictions,” said Santos.
Educational exchange between member countries will also increase, according to Santos.
“There was a proposal to provide about 25 scholarships from each country to the other countries: college scholarships. Today we decided to multiply it by four. We will give at least 100 scholarships and we will consider giving more scholarships from each country to the rest of the countries,” he added.