The Government of Belize is seeking to strengthen economic ties with its neighbors to the north and west. Yesterday, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade Eamon Courtenay and the Minister of Agriculture Jose Mai met to discuss collaboration between the ministries, with a view to further develop the country’s agenda for trade and investment with Guatemala and Mexico. Among the discussions was the scope of the market access interest by Belize’s side into Guatemala relating to the ongoing negotiations for the expansion of the Partial Scope Agreement and the interests, constraints, and concerns relating to the formalization of bilateral trade and investment between Belize and Mexico. Also discussed was the state of Belize’s export competitiveness covering production capacity for key exports, the import requirements to be met by local producers for export to Guatemala and Mexico. The companies currently capable of producing for export to these markets, the role of trade (market) intelligence in entering export markets, and the mobilization of resources for trade development. The group agreed that it will meet on a quarterly basis going forward given the importance attached to agriculture, trade, and the current focus on securing preferential markets for Belize’s exports.