The United States currently has significant national, but not vital, interests at stake in South America. The US has historically treated the region with indifference and benign neglect, as long as communism or powers from outside the hemisphere were not involved in attempts to gain hegemony. From a South American perspective, this appears to be a pattern of exploitation to be wary of. US interests center on economics and maintaining political stability economic integration with South America by the year 2005 is a commitment that is in the United Stat & best interest The expanding economies of MERCOSUR and Chile will integrate elsewhere if the US does not act Access to the continent's oil reserves is also beneficial to the US. Eliminating the interrelated transnational threats of illegal immigration, organized crime, corruption, envionmental degradation, and especially narcotics trafficking is a difficult, if not intractable, challenge for the US.