The Cadiz Summit, which will be held on Nov. 16-17 in that southern Spanish city, will be an opportunity to renew relations among the Ibero-American nations and to reflect on matters of common interest in a changing world.

That viewpoint was articulated Wednesday on the first day of the Ibero-American meeting at which politicians and analysts are gathered at the Casa de America in Madrid to discuss the current and future status of the region.

The head of the Ibero-American Secretariat, Enrique Iglesias, emphasized the summit's character of "renewal and reorientation" for the leaders of Latin America, Spain, Portugal and Andorra.

The conference will allow "reflection on the role of the Ibero-American communities of nations in a scenario that has changed greatly since the holding of the first summit in 1991," he said.

Given this new scenario, Iglesias made reference to the new opportunities that the Ibero-American space can offer for all the member countries via trade and, above all, the association among small and medium businesses, an issue that will be dealt with at the Cadiz Summit.

Spain's secretary of state for International Cooperation and Ibero-America, Jesus Gracia Aldaz, also emphasized the "positive moment of Latin America, which is having an historic opportunity and is projecting itself into the world as a reality."

For Spain, he said, "the American dimension is very important, it is an alliance of the future and we must be the Iberian anchorage for them."

Former Spanish Prime Minister Felipe Gonzalez, who was invited to the luncheon held after the inaugural ceremony, also made reference to the attitude that Spain must have toward Latin America "and vice versa."

"That relationship must be recovered, reorienting the debate and reflection toward what can benefit all of us," because if that does not occur "interest in the summits will be lost."

In Cadiz, the green light will be given to the creation of a working group that will craft a new format for these conferences with an eye toward approving their transformation at the next such meeting, to be held in Panama in 2013, Gracia told Efe. EFE