On 20-21 March 2019 in the Costa Rican capital of San José, over 100 policy makers, regulators, businesses, academics and other representatives of civil society engaged in working groups to deliver proposals for digital cooperation between the European Union and Latin America and Caribbean regions.

The event was opened by H.E. EU Ambassador to Costa Rica, Pelayo Castro Zuzuarregui, and the Minister of Science, Technology and Telecommunications of Costa Rica, Luis Adrian Salazar.  Participants stressed the importance of enhancing and modernising relations between the two regions in order to seize the opportunities and face the challenges brought by the digital transformation of our economies & societies. The workshop reflected the aspiration of stakeholders from both regions to develop models for cooperation to exchange ideas and best practice, to increase connectivity and to align approaches.

A presentation by the research network community RedCLARA on the opportunities that will arise from the new transatlantic submarine fibre-optic cable BELLA (Building Europe Link to Latin America). The project is bringing together research networks from the two continents and the discussion underlined the need to step-up joint approaches between European and Latin America.

Participants included members of the Digital Agenda for Latin America & the Caribbean (eLAC) and other initiatives such as Mercosur, the Pacific Alliance, and CARICOM. Regional development banks, regulators, private sector and academia also played a leading role in the discussions.

There was a lot of discussion about the experience of the EU in establishing the Digital Single Market. Proposals from participants ranged from launching expert exchanges, sharing best practices and joint studies in the areas of network security, regulatory approaches, audio-visual media, online platforms and eCommerce amongst others.

Background

This EU initiative financed by the Partnership Instrument is the second of two workshops that will result in a compilation of views from stakeholders on future EU-LAC digital cooperation. It was launched to support the elaboration of future cooperation initiatives between the two regions.

For more information