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Expand your Export Markets in Latin America: LOOK SOUTH

We are excited to announce LOOK SOUTH, government-wide initiative to help more American companies “Look South” to do business with Mexico and the United States’ 10 other Free Trade Agreement (FTA) partners in Latin America. LOOK SOUTH will help businesses across the country explore these markets, learn about emerging opportunities, and tap into federal programs that can help companies get deals done.

A record number of American businesses are reaching international customers, but exporting companies are only taking advantage of one market. Expanding to additional export markets improves a business’ bottom line. Companies exporting to one market average roughly $375,000 in export sales. For a company exporting to two-to-four export markets, that average nearly triples to $1 million in sales.

For businesses looking to expand their export markets, looking South is a simple way to do it. More than half of our Free Trade Agreement partners are in Latin America. These 11 economies – Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, and Peru – all have a rapidly growing base of middle-class consumers and diversifying industries. Tariffs are low or nonexistent, which can mean a lower cost of doing business and lower barriers to entry in these markets.

The best news of all is that we have your back. The Department of Commerce is leading this effort along with the Department of State, the Small Business Administration, the Export-Import Bank, Department of Agriculture, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency. 

Here are some ways for you to be a part of the movement:

  • Visit export.gov/LookSouth to learn about federal resources available to support you and upcoming events. The site features research on a number of markets and industries, and provides tips about doing business in Latin American markets.
  • Become a local or national partner to help promote trade with Look South markets to more U.S. businesses in a number of ways. E-mail looksouth@trade.gov to learn more.
  • Check out the International Trade Administration’s Trade Winds – The Americas event in May to connect to a world of opportunity in the Americas. The Commercial Service team will support you through a series of business-to-business meetings in Colombia, Panama, Chile, Ecuador, and Peru.