Economic Problems of the Latin American Republics
by FRANK A. WARING
THE Latin American republics, 10 in South America and 10 in North America, occupy an area more than 2½ times as great as that of continental United States and have an estimated population of 128 millions. The American countries south of the Rio Grande, however, cannot be considered or studied as a unit because of the marked differences among them in resources, climate, industries, and trade and in peoples and languages. Each of these countries has its own peculiar economy, and in the postwar period each will be faced with its own peculiar economic problems, many of which will have arisen out of the war or will have been intensified as a result of it.1
The economy of Mexico is based chiefly on mining and agriculture. Minerals customarily constitute more than three-fourths the total export trade; they include silver, gold, petroleum, zinc, lead, copper, antimony, mercury, and graphite. The principal agricultural exports are bananas, henequen, chicle, coffee, fresh vegetables, and cattle.
Sugar and its derivatives are the chief products exported by the three island republics;2 others are tobacco, coffee, and sisal. The Central American countries3 ship principally bananas, coffee, cacao, and gold.____________________