Costa Rican voters are deciding in a referendum today whether to participate in a U.S.-led regional trade agreement, CAFTA. Proponents tout the benefits on enhanced market access in the U.S., while opponents fret about provisions that will require changes in domestic regulations (in telecomms and insurance in particular), increase rights of U.S. investors, tighten intellectual property rules, and open up domestic agricultural markets. Here is a detailed summary of the agreement.
I have been a critic of these regional agreements in the past because their benefits tend to be greatly oversold. The additional market access you get is generally not worth the restrictions on your policy space that you have to accept. Developing countries have tended to sign on to these more for their signaling value ("we are a nice country and open for business") than for the direct economic gains. If NAFTA has proved such a disappointment for Mexico, it is hard to imagine that CAFTA will do a great deal for the development prospects of these countries.
Cost Rica is a long-standing democracy that rightly prides itself in its social arrangements and the quality of its polity. I do not know enough to have a strong view as to whether CAFTA is good or bad for this country. But I am happy that there is a referendum on the subject. Let the people decide.