Kamala Harris calls for increased investments in Latin America to stem illegal immigration

February 8, 2023

Fox News reported that there were over 2 million encounters between migrants and border personnel in fiscal year 2022. While Vice President Kamala Harris recently unveiled a new strategy to address the problem, her critics aren't impressed.  

According to the Daily Wire, Harris has encouraged private corporations to channel more economic investment into Latin American countries.

Plan targets El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras

According to a fact sheet published by the White House this week, the vice president has "galvanized more than $4.2 billion in private sector commitments to create economic opportunity in northern Central America."

Officially known as the Call to Action and the Partnership for Central America (PCA), it seeks to "create economic opportunity in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras."

What's more, Harris has "launched the next chapter " of this approach through something called Central America Forward, an initiative which the White House says "goes beyond addressing the economic drivers of migration."

Rather, it includes "a focus on good governance and labor rights into this public-private partnership, key priorities under the Strategy that are also essential in ensuring the success of our private sector partners."

$331 million for humanitarian assistance

Among Central America Forward's objectives is the creation of one million jobs in the region. This will in part come via a $75 million debt fund for small businesses and $500 million in infrastructure deals.

This is far from being the first time that the Biden White House has attempted to address the "root causes" of illegal migration.

In June, the administration announced "$331 million for humanitarian assistance, food security assistance, and disaster risk reduction assistance" in Latin America and the Caribbean.

"This contribution will complement the United States’ existing commitment to providing life-saving humanitarian assistance, responding to acute food insecurity, and advancing capacity-building activities that bolster disaster preparedness and response” across Latin America and the Caribbean, a White House statement read.

Critics say emphasis should be on security

However, not everyone is convinced that such moves will be effective. One of the skeptics is R.J. Hauman, who serves as head of government relations at the Federation for American Immigration Reform

Hauman said in a statement to the Daily Wire that "none of these investments serve as a deterrent for illegal immigration to the United States."

"If the Biden administration wanted to truly end the crisis, they should start from the ground up at relevant agencies, not in corporate boardrooms," Hauman insisted.

"Sign asylum cooperative agreements, reform our asylum system, empower officers to enforce federal immigration law, and send the message to economic migrants and human smugglers that asylum fraud is not a pathway to get into the United States," he concluded.

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