MEXICO CITY — There are great differences between the plastics industries in the United States and Canada, as compared with Latin America, and these should be addressed in the negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement for the Americas, warned the president of the Asociaci¢n Latinamerica de la Industria Pl stica (Aliplast), Hector A. Mendez.
In a presentation at PlastImagen '97, held Sept. 9-12 in Mexico City, Mendez pointed out several facts that show the depth of the differences:
The United States and Canada consume 77.2 billion pounds of plastic resins per year compared to 15.4 billion pounds for Latin America.
The United States and Canada have 13,400 plastics processors with 935,200 employees. Latin America has 12,500 processors with 390,000 workers.
U.S. and Canadian firms are far more productive, processing an average of 5.7 million pounds per company per year. Latin American firms process an average of 1.27 million pounds a year.
The average U.S. and Canadian resident consumes 262 pounds of plastic per year, compared with 39.6 pounds in Latin America.
Aliplast has scheduled the First Congress of the Plastic Industry of the Americas for April in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The objectives will be to analyze the processes of economic integration in the Americas in preparation for the Free Trade Agreement for the Americas, as well as analyze the current situation of the industry.