Latin America Legal

Legal developments & business opportunities arising in Latin America

On October 31, Fitch Ratings lowered its long-term outlook for Mexico from stable to negative, while keeping the country’s sovereign credit rating at investment grade.  This, largely in reaction to Mexico President-Elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s (also known as AMLO) statement on October 29 that once in office he plans to cancel the continued development of the US$13.3 Billion partially-constructed New International Airport of Mexico City (NAIM).  The NAIM, sited on the outskirts of Mexico…
During a recent visit to Washington, DC, Argentina’s Minister of Production and Labor, Miguel Braun, stated that Argentina’s government continues to strengthen its economy by focusing on increasing foreign direct investment to the country. Minister Braun also stated that, while preparing for presidential elections in October 2019, President Mauricio Macri will continue to implement economic and fiscal reforms and work on simplifying institutional bureaucracy in order to improve the business environment in Argentina.  For example, Macri’s administration…
Brazil has taken another important step towards the battle against corruption. In August 2018, Brazil enacted Decree-Law No. 9,468/18, which provides broader power to the Public Transparency and Anti-Corruption Council, public entity subject to the Secretary of Transparency, Supervision and Control of Brazil. Under the law, the Council’s purpose is to discuss ideas and suggestions to improve policies and strategies aimed at combating corruption and impunity within the Federal Public Administration. The Council must also…
On Thursday, September 6, 2018, the United States House of Representatives passed H.R. 4606 – Ensuring Small Scale LNG Certainty and Access Act (the “Bill”) by a vote of 260-146 largely along party lines with 37 Democrats joining 223 Republicans. The Bill amends Section 3(c) of the Natural Gas Act (15 U.S.C. 717b(c)) (the “NGA”) to provide that the importation or exportation of natural gas shall be deemed in the public interest and an application…
On August 14, 2018, after eight years of debates and drafting in the National Congress, Brazilian President Michel Temer sanctioned Law No. 13.709/2018, which regulates the General Data Protection in Public and Private Sectors. The General Data Protection Law is the first legislation in the country that provides for the data protection of individuals and private and public legal entities. The law was largely inspired by the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”). Among…
Earlier this year Squire Patton Boggs hosted the International Institute of Communications’  (IIC) Telecommunications and Media Forum (TMF), which took place in Miami.  The IIC is an international non-profit organization that brings together regulators, policy-makers and industry representatives to promote open dialogue and shape the public policy agenda in the telecommunications, media and technology sector. The TMF was a two-day conference that focused on Latin America and examined the policy frameworks that can best promote…
The left-leaning 64-year old Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador “known as AMLO,” who represents the MORENA Party, won the Mexican presidential election on July 1, 2018. This victory comes after two unsuccessful presidential campaigns in 2006 and 2012. AMLO’s pledge to end corruption, reduce violence and decrease poverty resonated this time with Mexican voters. He will be sworn-in on December 1, 2018. AMLO will be taking the helm of a country with a weakened economy facing…
Like the United States, Colombia has similarly become very polarized over the past few years. Simply put, this dichotomy involves (1) those who support the former two-term President, and now senator, Álvaro Uribe Vélez (“Uribe”) and his political polices, and (2) those who do not support him or his policies. Colombia’s newest President-elect, Iván Duque (“Duque”), falls in the Uribe camp. By way of background, Uribe’s supporters are characterized as right wing conservatives and are…
The Mexican Government announced a series of retaliatory tariffs on a diverse group of U.S. products in reaction to tariffs imposed by the United States on imports of steel and aluminum. The response from Mexico comes after more than a year of developments in the bilateral trade relationship.  In April 2017, the Trump Administration self-initiated two separate investigations under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, on the grounds that imports of steel…
Minimizing Risks In our two previous posts, we discussed the general outline of the Mexican National Anticorruption System, and highlighted some aspects of the General Law of Administrative Responsibility and the Federal Criminal Code that affect legal entities. We now turn our attention to what these laws refer to as an “Integrity Policy” and the ways entities can avoid, limit or minimize liability. Burden and Standard of Proof Under both the Federal Criminal Code and…