Regional Integration - SIEPAC getting closer
SIEPAC is the name of the transmission line that will connect the electrical grids of six Central American countries and Mexico. It had been discussed for over 30 years and has been in progress for approximately 15 years, a large part of that time required to change laws and create a regional electrical market. There are now plans underway to connect Columbia.
In October 2010, line testing started in Panama. More recently, May 13, the line from Cañas, Costa Rica to Ticuantepe, Nicaragua was tested with estimates that it would be permanent by now. See article here in Spanish. Land acquisition problems in Costa Rica have delayed project completion until 2012 but many parts will be functioning earlier.
Another component of the project is FIBRE OPTIC INFRASTRUCTURE (!!). This webpage, from the company that designed the telecommunications infrastructure, describes it as effectively connecting the telecommunications systems of North and South America. As recently as last summer, it was estimated that operations would start in the 2nd quarter of 2011...
And yet another document, here describes the physical infrastructure for Integration in Latin America and the Caribbean, including the national roads, SIEPAC, and the MesoAmerican Information Highway (AMI), and more.