BY CHRONICLE STAFF
As President George W. Bush visits Latin America next month, he can highlight some good news: Last year was another milestone in U.S. trade with Latin America. Total trade reached a whopping $555.1 billion, a 14.3 percent increase from 2005. The growth was higher than the overall U.S. trade increase, which expanded by 11.4 percent.
U.S. exports to Latin America grew by 15.8 percent to $223.2 billion. That was higher than the overall U.S. export growth of 12.7 percent. Imports from Latin America increased by 13.3 percent to $331.9 billion. That was also higher than the overall 10.5 percent increase in U.S. imports. All in all, the United States boosted trade with all but three countries in Latin America last year.
The U.S. deficit with the region grew by 8.6 percent to $108.8 billion, according to a Latin Business Chronicle analysis of US Census Bureau data. That means that the deficit with Latin America grew more than the overall trade deficit, which expanded by 6.5 percent.
WINNERS & LOSERS
Chile was the big winner in terms of overall trade with the United States, measured in percentage growth. Its two-way trade with the United States...