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  • Author: Nora Lustig
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: It's time to measure the income share of Latin America's super-rich.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Canada, Argentina, Latin America
  • Author: José Raúl Perales
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: The hemisphere's free-trade agreements-and how to untangle them.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Canada, Latin America, Caribbean, Mexico
  • Author: Robert A. Pastor
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Two decades ago, the leaders of Canada, Mexico and the United States forged an agreement that transformed North America from just a geographical expression to the world's most formidable economic entity. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) eliminated most of the trade and investment barriers that had segmented the continent. Within a decade, trade among the three countries tripled and foreign direct investment (FDI) quintupled. By 2001, the three nations of North America accounted for 36 percent of the world product—up from 30 percent in 1994. And while many economists have waxed enthusiastic about the growing power of Brazil, U.S. trade with Mexico today is more than six times larger than its trade with Brazil. Unfortunately, since 2001 regional cooperation has stagnated. NAFTA, designed to expand trade and investment, has proven too limited in addressing the current issues facing the three countries. The time has come for the leaders of North America to recommit to regional integration if they want to effectively address the policy issues facing the region. For example, in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, NAFTA can play a major role in job creation. A revamped agreement can potentially double exports and allow North America to once again compete with integrated markets in Asia and Europe. Beyond jobs, enhanced coordination and information sharing among NAFTA partners will allow for better control of immigration and the flow of illicit drugs across our borders. Finally, strengthening ties will begin to close the development gap between Mexico and its two neighbors, fortifying the economic and political bloc. The Rise and Fall of North America Though NAFTA has long faded from the headlines, the agreement's first years showed much promise. When the North American market was created in 1992, the impact was almost immediate. Contrary to the claim by U.S. presidential candidate Ross Perot that American jobs would be “sucked” into Mexico, the dramatic increase in North American trade coincided with the largest wave of job creation in U.S. history. Between 1992 and 2000, roughly 22 million jobs were added in the U.S., while trade with and FDI in Canada and Mexico grew more than 17 percent each year. The combination of expanded trade and investment meant that the three countries were actually making products together rather than just trading them. By combining U.S. capital and technology with Mexico's cheaper labor and Canada's abundant resources, the enlarged North American market experienced rapid growth, while Europe stagnated. From the onset of the U.S.-Canadian Free Trade Agreement in 1988 to 2001, trade among Mexico, Canada and the U.S., as a percentage of their trade with the world, leapt from 36 percent to 46 percent. The decline of the integration idea could be dated to the spring of 2001, when Presidents Vicente Fox of Mexico and George W. Bush of the U.S. met Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien in Québec. Fox and his Foreign Minister Jorge Castañeda arrived with a suitcase filled with proposals, such as a North American Commission, a “cohesion” fund to reduce the development gap, a customs union and an immigration agreement. But Chrétien was not interested in including Mexico in Canada's talks with the U.S., and Bush rejected any new multilateral institution or fund. The opportunity for progress was lost. The share of trade among the three countries as a percentage of their trade with the rest of the world dropped from 46 percent in 2001 to 40 percent in 2009—almost to pre-NAFTA levels. The average annual growth of trade among the three countries declined by two-thirds, while growth of foreign direct investment decreased by one-half…
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Canada, Brazil, North America, Mexico
  • Author: Chris Madsen
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: If the terrorist attacks of 9/11 on New York City and Washington D.C. were a rude wake-up call for potential security threats to continental North America, the reaction on part of Canada has been measured and typically cautious. The acts were of course immediately condemned and temporary refuge given to thousands of travellers stranded by closure of airspace over the United States until declared safe. The federal government and most Canadians extended sympathy and offers of assistance to their closest neighbour and main trading partner. Close cultural and economic ties between the two countries ensured as much. Unease, however, set in about the tough talk and next progression characterized by President George Bush's now famous “You're either with us or against us” speech. Canada's then Liberal prime minister decided not to send the Canadian military wholeheartedly into the invasion of Iraq, though deployment of Canadian troops in Afghanistan duly became a major commitment. Reassuring the United States of Canada's reliability and loyalty as a partner was imperative. To this end, the federal government tightened up financial restrictions on potential fund-raising by identified terrorist groups, introduced new legislation and bureaucratic structures focused on security issues, and better coordinated intelligence gathering and information sharing activities across government agencies and with principal allies. Canadians convinced themselves that any possibility of a 9/11 scale terrorist attack on Canada was unlikely, and even if one was planned or happened, the effect would be minimized by the pro-active measures of authorities. Selected use of security certificates and arrest of home grown Islamic terrorists, the so-called Toronto 18, apparently showed that the police and intelligence agents were up to the task. The threat of terrorism, if not eliminated, could at least be managed and thwarted when required to provide a reasonable level of safety to the Canadian state and society. Ten years on, the course of events has shown the chosen policy decisions to have been mostly sound. Though the highest leadership of Al Qaeda remain at large and defiant as ever in their stated resolve to attack the West, Canada has not yet experienced a major terrorist incident since 9/11.
  • Topic: Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, New York, Washington, Canada, North America
  • Author: Michael Kuzik
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Economic forces will ultimately determine the destiny of the Canadian Arctic, not displays of military force. Economic opportunity will prove far more cost effective and longer lasting than increasing the visibility, or even effectiveness, of Canada's military in the Arctic. Some observers expect the mounting evidence of a treasure trove of hydrocarbons on land and under the sea in Canada's Arctic to act as the economic catalyst. However crude oil and natural gas exploitation in Canada's North is fraught with a myriad of challenges. This paper will shed light on the harsh climactic, economic and political realities of oil and gas exploration and development in the Canadian Arctic. Climatic conditions, even in the wake of evidence of climate change, will still be extreme as will the distances and the topography. First and foremost the economics have to make sense; a profit has to be available to entice the capital needed for developing the north's vast hydrocarbon potential. Additionally, the political realities include pollution mitigation and outstanding native land claims.
  • Topic: Economics, Environment
  • Political Geography: Canada
  • Author: Craig Biddle
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Objective Standard
  • Institution: The Objective Standard
  • Abstract: Welcome to the Fall 2010 issue of TOS—and a special welcome to our new Canadian readers who, with this issue, are discovering the Standard via newsstands in Canada's largest bookstore chain, Chapters/Indigo. We are excited to add our northern neighbors to the list of countries we infiltrate with principled discussion of the moral and philosophical foundations of freedom.
  • Topic: Economics, Islam
  • Political Geography: America, Canada
  • Author: Joseph Blomeley
  • Publication Date: 05-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Woodrow Wilson School Journal of Public and International Affairs
  • Institution: Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University
  • Abstract: With a population of over 500 million, the European Union (EU) is Canada's second-largest trading partner. In 2006, two-way merchandise trade between Canada and the EU was approximately $78 billion and two-way investment reached $263 billion. While these figures are far from marginal, they pale in comparison to the $626 billion in two-way merchandise trade and $497 billion in two-way investment with the United States. In light of these numbers, analysts have argued that there is room for improvement in the economic relationship between Canada and the EU. They believe that the relationship has been significantly under-traded and under-valued. In an attempt to bolster this claim, a Canada-EU Joint Trade Study commissioned by the European Commission and the Government of Canada (GoC) recently noted that Canada is the EU's 11th-largest merchandise trading partner, with only 1.8 percent of external EU trade in this category (GoC, 2008). In light of the financial crisis in the United States, discussions to revive talks of a Canada-EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA) have begun to garner attention.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Canada
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Affairs
  • Institution: The European Institute
  • Abstract: Beneath the mantra about a coordinated global response to the economic crisis, a line of fracture starkly divides the two sides of the Atlantic about what to do in practice to revive the sinking economies. In Washington, the Obama administration is accepting an unprecedented amount of government debt in order to pump money into the hands of consumers who can spend it and revive business. An Obama aide says that Canada, France, Germany and are not matching the U.S. effort with stimulus spending of their own and should do more. No, answer Ms. Merkel and Mr. Sarkozy - firmly but politely, so far - this is the wrong approach, the wrong priority. The global financial rules need to be overhauled before more money is pumped into it, they say, because the real problem is the lack of confidence in a recent U.S. model of capitalism that has collapsed. And, they say privately, America is to blame for the problem, so America should pay to fix it.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: America, Washington, Canada, France, Germany
  • Author: Michael O'Hanlon
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Washington Quarterly
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: How can we make sense of where the United States is in Afghanistan today? A poor country, wracked by 30 years of civil war, finds itself at the mercy of insurgents, terrorists, and narco-traffickers. NATO's economy-of-force operation there has attempted to help build a nation with very few resources. Yet, overall levels of violence remain relatively modest by comparison with other violent lands such as the Congo, Iraq, and even Mexico. Economic growth is significant and certain quality of life indicators are improving, though from a very low base. The United States is committed to Afghanistan and over the course of 2009 will roughly double its troop strength there. The international community is also seriously committed, with a number of key countries such as Canada, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom fighting hard and applying solid principles of counterinsurgency.
  • Topic: NATO, Economics
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, United Kingdom, Canada, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mexico, Netherlands
  • Author: Suzanne Berger
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: There are intense debates in France today over globalization and its impact on democratic values and practice. The arguments retrace in many respects a much older inquiry into the compatibility of democracy and capitalism. The history of the past two hundred years suggests that despite the inequities that capitalist economies generate, the majority of the electorate has not been willing to vote out the system. Capitalism was protected, in part, by the fact that these systems were never wholly democratic, but provided constitutional protections for property. And democracy was preserved, in part, by the fact that these systems were never wholly capitalist, but in fact within national borders found a variety of solutions for blunting the impact of market forces. If globalization means a world without national borders, one may question whether this co-existence of capitalism and democracy can continue, and in fact, much of the French debate focuses on this point. This article retraces the history of the borders of France and suggests that borders are political, not geographic, constructions and as such, are far from disappearing even between the US and Canada, even within the European Union. As long as states can still regulate economic exchanges in ways that differentiate their societies from adjacent countries, borders persist. Globalization does create serious new challenges, but the stark dilemma of choosing either a world of economic openness or a world of liberal democracy does not capture the real stake and choices available to France and other democratic societies.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Canada, France