Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean

The Economic Commission for Latin America (ECLA) -the Spanish acronym is CEPAL- was established by Economic and Social Council resolution 106(VI) of 25 February 1948 and began to function that same year. The scope of the Commission's work was later broadened to include the countries of the Caribbean, and by resolution 1984/67 of 27 July 1984, the Economic Council decided to change its name to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC); the Spanish acronym, CEPAL, remains unchanged.

ECLAC was founded with the purpose of contributing to the economic development of Latin America, coordinating actions directed towards this end, and reinforcing economic ties among countries and with other nations of the world. The promotion of the region's social development was later included among its primary objectives.

During phase 1 and 2 of the MSME Surge project, ECLAC, in collaboration with UNCTAD, has focused its efforts to support MSMEs regional institutions and defend competition at two levels:

First, identifying lessons learned and good practices accumulated during the pandemic; and, second, generating dialogue spaces between MSMEs and competition institutions, who even though they work in complementary areas, they scarcely interact with each other. In these areas, the most significant results have been achieved through the research carried out in a dozen LATAM countries about policies experience in both areas. The results have been actively disseminated through two international dialogues between MSMEs and antitrust authorities.

Both, the research and regional dialogues have led to comments on key aspects that need to be strengthened with respect to the capabilities of the institutions involved. The main one refers to the impact of the digitization processes of enterprises on the contents and forms of policies to support MSMEs and defend competition. Based on these indications, ECLAC, in collaboration with UNCTAD, is developing an online training course for MSME promotion and antitrust institutions.






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