Leaders from across Ibero-America have arrived in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic for the 28th regional summit. Expected to focus on issues of the environment, food safety, financial architecture and digitisation, the event will cover a range of geopolitical and socio-economic topics over the course of Friday and Saturday. The event is seen as especially significant as it is the first to be held entirely in-person since 2018, and comes after years of preparatory meetings, a total of 13, which covered areas such as foreign relations, economy and agriculture.
So far, 14 presidents and two vice presidents have arrived at the conference in the Dominican Republic, with leaders set to focus on four key areas – environment, food safety, financial architecture and digitisation. As inequalities continue to widen in the region, from social and economic to gender and digital divides, leaders have focused on highlighting the themes of “fairness” and “sustainability” in their talks. Topics set to be covered include the war in Ukraine as well as the critical situation in Haiti, while the conference is also expected to discuss relations between Ibero-America and the European Union.
Heading into the conference, are Spain’s King Felipe VI, Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, Honduran President Xiomara Castro, Uruguayan President Luis Lacalle Pou, and Chilean President Gabriel Boric. Other heads of state are expected to arrive throughout the day, with the summit officially inaugurated at the Ozama Fortress on Friday night. The meeting comes at an especially significant time as nations across the globe work to grapple with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.