I live on a small island in the Caribbean and growing up I was taught that my country was a part of the North American continent. As the years progressed it was common to hear the island being referred to as part of Latin America and the Caribbean, which begged the question- are we a part of South America? The background of such a question being an obvious one with the ‘latin’ reference. A most perturbing conundrum when the first language of most of the Caribbean islands being British English. Even though I have a position that local dialects should be recognised as the ‘first’ language…but I digress. Either way this still does not resolve the alignment with Latin America.
Information from ECLAC and the OAS assisted in giving a break down of the region. Firstly, there are thirty-three (33) countries within the region of Latin America and the Caribbean. The graph below gives a quick look at the socio-economy of the region. 32 of these are middle-income resulting in LAC being referred to as the ‘middle-class of the world.’ In undertaking research though I have observed that there is a paucity of data and research datasets on the region, as a whole. When reference is made to the region reporting is sometimes on a few of the major Latin American countries, for example Brazil, Venezuela and Argentina whilst other times referring sparsely to Jamaica or Trinidad and Tobago. The information for the latter is even at times not treated in similar manner as the former. There is an absence of uniformity and therefore this limits a true comparison. This both an end result and a starting point indicator which adds credibility to the discussion on the suitability of this coupling.