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Latin American Jurisdictions: ALBA

Bloc Membership

ALBA

Antigua and Barbuda

Bolivia

Cuba

Dominica

Ecuador

Honduras

Nicaragua

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Venezuela

Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America (ALBA)

The Bolivarian Alliance (formerly Alternative) for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA, Alternativa Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América), was established by the Cuba-Venezuela Agreement, signed on 14 December 2004 by President Fidel Castro of Cuba and President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela.  As with later bi-lateral agreements within ALBA, the Cuban-Venezuela Agreement is based on barter terms of trade of medical resources for petroleum between the two countries, respectively. 

Named after the nineteenth-century Venezuelan general, Simón Bolívar, who became a hero in Venezuela and the rest of Latin America after initiating the struggle for Latin American independence, ALBA has now come to represent an alternative to US proposals for a Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA; in Spanish: Área de Libre Comercio de las Américas, ALCA), focusing on social welfare and mutual economic aid over trade liberalisation.

Bolivian president Evo Morales joined ALBA in April 2006, signing the Peoples' Trade Agreement.  In January 2007, newly-elected president of Nicaragua Daniel Ortega signed the agreement.  Dominica joined ALBA in January 2008, followed by Honduras in August of that year.  Antigua and Barbuda, Ecuador and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines formally joined ALBA in June 2009.

ALBA countries have created a new trading currency aimed at avoiding transaction charges incurred when using US dollars. The SUCRE (Sistema Único de Compensación Regional; in English: Unified System for Regional Compensation) was first used by Venezuela to buy rice from Ecuador on 7 July 2010.