Guatemala Trade Offices

Commercial Diplomacy as a tool for the development of a country

by: Miguel Sólis

Commercial Attache, Embassy of Guatemala in Washington D.C.


In the January´s 2017 edition of AMCHAM’s Business in Action magazine, Otto Mazariegos, executive director of the Programa de Agregados Comerciales de Guatemala (PACIT), developed and explained in 300 words the vast universe of activities around the world that the trade attaché’s develop.   For my part, I will try to define the principles but mainly the objectives and tools that each of the professionals that compose this program use to achieve the commercial goals established as a country.

Leaving aside purely academic definitions, I understand that Commercial Diplomacy is one of the most important fields for the development and good performance of a country’s exportable portfolio of goods and services in the world market. It deals mainly with the negotiations that regulate the framework of action of countries and companies in international trade relations. It is also responsible for defining the procedures for the resolution of conflicts that may arise in these activities.

Throughout history, all the nations that have sought development have as a common denominator the stimulus of their commercial efforts as an unbeatable vehicle of relationship with other nations. The example par excellence is the United States of America. Joe Biden, the former vice president of the United States, said in an article he wrote for Foreign Affairs (Sept-Oct 2016) that the 3 fundamental elements of this nation’s global leadership are: first and foremost, a dynamic economy, the second, its military power and finally their universal values. Regardless of whether or not you agree with Biden, its surprising that he gives priority to the economy as the foundation of the U.S. world leadership and it is inevitable that I invite you to make that same reflection for our country.

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