Environmental Assessments and Capacity Building for Trade Liberalization in the Americas: Central America


  • Environmental Assessment and Capacity Building for Free Trade in Panama.

Costa Rica and Guatemala

In the assessment conducted for Costa Rica and Guatemala sugar cane and melon were selected for the analysis due to the importance of the agricultural sector for Central American economies. The assessment shows that during 2001, melon exports in both countries increased by $118 million dollars, expanding the cultivated area in the region to almost twenty thousand hectares. In the particular case of sugar cane, the analysis shows how both countries already have trade preferences with the United States, one of the main destination markets, through the Caribbean Basin Initiative and how they could be consolidated with an annual 2% increase in the quota if the DR-CAFTA agreement is implemented. Some of the environmental issues analyzed in the assessment include the intensive use of water and its contamination from agricultural activities, as well as the effects of plastic disposal practices and pesticide use in melon production. Pollution originating from “slash and burn” in sugar cane plantations and some externalities related to soil and water were also covered. This assessment includes policy recommendations that have already been discussed with different stakeholders in the region.

 El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua

The OAS/DSD has undertaken a scoping exercise of lessons-learned and capacity building needs in the area of trade and environment for El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua. The required information for this component was obtained mainly through a survey that was completed by stakeholders at the national level from different sectors including private, governmental and non governmental. (NGOs).
  • Download publications (Spanish).
  • Download annexes (Spanish).
  • Summary table with economic, social, environmental, and legal/institutional impacts of trade liberalization for key sector in Central America.