North American Economic Integration

North American Economic Integration

Theory and Practice

Norris C. Clement, Gustavo del Castillo Vera, James Gerber, William A. Kerr, Alan J. MacFayden, Stanford Shedd, Eduardo Zepeda and Diana Alarcón

This highly accessible book explains the theoretical, historical and political background of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), its impact and the debates surrounding its existence. In addition the authors provide a brief introduction to the theory of economic integration as well as a succinct overview of the evolution of the global economy, and the institutions that manage it, in the post World War II period.
Subjects: business and management, international business, economics and finance, international economics


  On a global basis, international trade and commercial relations are expanding at much more rapid rates than national economies are growing. As a result, international  commerce is expected to be one of the major engines of economic betterment in the new millennium. The technological advances underlying the process of  globalization­primary electronic transfers of information at low cost and improvements in transportation ­­ are taking place without significant government involvement.  Governments, however, have been active in enhancing the role of trade in their economic development through the negotiation of trade agreements which reduce trade  barriers and other impediments to international commercial relations. The aim of these agreements is to foster the deepening of economic integration among countries  while at the same time safeguarding national sovereignty. Achieving the right balance between these two contradictory objectives is a great challenge.  The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) reached by Canada, Mexico and the United States is one of the most important trade agreements ever  negotiated. This is because it allows for the integration of the extremely large North American market, it has provisions which go far beyond the removal of trade  barriers, it brings together both developing and developed economies in a regional trade organization and it may provide a model for a larger trade organization  spanning the Western Hemisphere.  This book brings together the views and experience of authors from the three NAFTA partners. It represents a unique insight into the forces which shaped NAFTA  and which will shape the future course...