SOUTH BANK: A PEOPLES’ PERSPECTIVE OF INTEGRATION 1. What is the South Bank? In February of 2007, Argentina and Venezuela, and soon afterwards Bolivia, Ecuador, and Paraguay, concluded an agreement to create a bank to finance development in and for the countries of the South: the South Bank. On May 3rd in a meeting between the President of Ecuador and the Ministers of Economy and Public Finances of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Venezuela, and Ecuador, Brazil officially confirmed its incorporation into the process. On June 25th, Uruguay, until then the only country of the Southern Cone Common Market (MERCOSUR) that was not part of the initiative, decided to actively participate in the creation of the South Bank. Chile and Colombia also showed interest, participating in some meetings as observers.