Free Trade in the Americas

Free Trade in the Americas

Economic and Political Issues for Governments and Firms

New Horizons in International Business series

Edited by Sidney Weintraub, Alan M. Rugman and Gavin Boyd

This book examines the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), an ambitious venture in regional market integration which builds on the principles of the North American Free Trade Agreement. It assesses the long-term corporate and public policy measures to cope with the increased monetary, fiscal and structural interdependence that will be required if the benefits of the FTAA are to be realized.

Chapter 10: Hemispheric alliance capitalism and structural partnering

Gavin Boyd

Subjects: business and management, international business, economics and finance, international economics


Gavin Boyd The formation of a free trade area of the Americas can be an arm’s length process, to establish an elementary system of regional market integration, without prospects for evolving closer and more extensive cooperation, to manage the interdependencies which will increase through trade and investment flows between the member countries. As those interdependencies become larger, however, with asymmetries that must be anticipated, the logic of managing them collectively may well become persuasive for North and South American policy comnunities and corporate associations. In the prospective hemispheric market integration, US transnational enterprises, advantaged by large resources and substantial involvement elsewhere in the global economy, will be especially active in the development of cross border structural links, and in related concentration trends. Intense competition between these firms is likely to express their dynamic rivalries in the home economy. This is a liberal market economy (Hall and Soskice 2001) which however, has coordination problems: the public good of spontaneous order that could be provided by substantial intercorporate cooperation has yet to be produced. There is a clear imperative to achieve a better balance between competition and cooperation, for greater efficiencies, higher stability, and increased social justice. Alliance capitalism is a concept which could inspire more coordination in the liberal US market economy (Dunning and Boyd 2003), with shifts toward the introduction of stakeholder systems of corporate governance. Widening intercorporate cooperation for the development of entrepreneurial complementarities would promise higher and more stable growth. The promotion of a collegial management culture would...

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