Mexico and Central America Regional Program

Speeches Shim


Over the last 20 years, Central American countries have made social and economic advances, including improved literacy rates, reduced infant and maternal mortality, increased trade, and generally, a succession of free and fair elections and peaceful government transitions.

Despite these gains, challenges that hinder economic and social development remain. Violence and insecurity, generated by gangs, narco-trafficking, and trafficking in persons, poverty and lack of economic opportunities inhibit growth and investment, particularly in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, and drive illegal immigration to the United States.  In response, the three countries developed the Alliance for Prosperity, a plan to advance prosperity, security, and governance to reduce illegal immigration, which aligns with the U.S. Government’s foreign policy objectives for Central America.


The  USAID Central America and Mexico (CAM) Regional Program supports key foreign assistance objectives that have a regional or global impact, including citizen security, trade, food security, and HIV/AIDS prevention.


USAID’s citizen security programs increase regional capacity and expertise through the exchange of best practices, and the scale-up of effective crime prevention models. This includes increased access to quality and comparative data and analysis on citizen security and governance; effective training and replication of best practices through a regional security academy; and formation of regional networks among key institutions.  A major regional program supports the reintegration of returned migrants to prevent repeat migration attempts.  Additionally, USAID improves human rights protection as an integral component of advancing security and development in the region.  Activities include building civil society’s advocacy for labor and human rights and early warning and monitoring systems of human rights violations to enable improved response.


USAID programs promote increased regional trade integration and employment generation to expand economic growth and reduce illegal immigration. Activities help improve border management and efficiency through modern information technology systems, transparent and predictable processes, and harmonized regulations and standards for products and services, including transport. Increased trade is also important for food security, another factor to deter illegal immigration.  USAID supports the U.S. Government’s Feed the Future (FtF) Initiative by developing market linkages in key regional agriculture supply chains to ensure the continued export growth of existing and new food products to regional and international markets, thus increasing employment, income, and overall food security.  Additionally, USAID provides technical assistance to fruit and vegetable producers to meet compliance standards of the Food Safety Modernization Act. 


The regional HIV/AIDS program helps contain the disease through targeted behavior-change programs for high-risk groups and an improved HIV/AIDS policy environment. The program features a multi-sector approach with partners in the public, private, traditional, nontraditional, faith-based and secular fields. The program emphasizes the participation and strengthening of local organizations to respond to the HIV/AIDS threat to future sustainable development of Central America.  The strategic use of information for advocacy, policy-making and monitoring and evaluation of program efforts will be a key tenet of this activity.  It will also integrate USAID-supported policy reform, human rights and stigma reduction activities, which reduce the conditions of vulnerability on the target population to make decisions freely with regard to safer sexual practices. This program supports the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the Agency’s goal of protecting human health.


USAID Regional Trade Facilitation and Border Management Project

Resilient Coffee in Central America Project

Regional Coastal Biodiversity Project


Youth and Community Development Program 

Regional Human Rights and Democracy 

Return and Reintegration in the Northern Triangle Program   

Regional Academy for Security