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A decade after the U.S., Canada and Mexico signed the North American Free Trade Agreement, former Mexican President Carlos Salinas de Gortari, left, former U.S. President George H.W. Bush, center, and former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, right, met for a conference on NAFTA at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington in December of 2002.
Photo Credit: J. Scott Applewhite/AP

20th anniversary of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)

January 1, 2014 marks the 20th anniversary of the coming into effect of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). It had been signed and then negotiated by the governments of Canada, the United States and Mexico “creating the largest free trade region in the world”.

In 1992, Canada’s Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, U.S. President George H.W. Bush, and Mexico’s President Carlos Salinas de Gortari watched as their trade representatives signed the deal in San Antonio, Texas. After more negotiations the deal came into effect in 2014, five years after an already existing trade deal (FTA) between Canada and the United States.

As the January 1st NAFTA anniversary approaches there are mixed reviews in all three countries about the impact of the trade agreement.

More information:
Text of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) – here
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada background info on NAFTA – here
Canadian Press - The smallest economy, Mexico has emerged as biggest winner of NAFTA deal – here
Globe and Mail - Free trade transformed Canada’s economy – here
Toronto Star/Bruce Campbell - Free trade’s tarnished silver anniversary – here

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Posted in Economy, International, Politics
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