Results : North Americans Are Better Off After 15 Years of NAFTA
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) revolutionized trade andinvestment in North America, helping to unlock our region’s economic potential.Since it came into effect 15 years ago, North Americans have enjoyed an overallextended period of strong economic growth and rising prosperity.NAFTA has helped to stimulate economic growth and create higher-paying jobsacross North America. It has also paved the way for greater market competitionand enhanced choice and purchasing power for North American consumers,families, farmers, and businesses.Furthermore, NAFTA has provided North American businesses with better access to materials, technologies, investment capital, and talent available acrossNorth America. This has helped make our businesses more competitive, bothwithin North America and around the world. With rapidly growing economies inAsia and South America challenging North America’s competitiveness, NAFTAremains key to sustained growth and prosperity in the region.NAFTA has proven that trade liberalization plays an important role in promotingtransparency, economic growth, and legal certainty. In the face of increasedglobal competition, Canada, the United States, and Mexico will work tostrengthen the competitiveness of the North American region by continuing topursue trade within the NAFTA region. The three countries will also continue toexpand trade with other regions. Additionally, Canada, Mexico, and the UnitedStates share common challenges within North America that directly affect qualityof life. At the 2009 North American Leaders’ Summit, our three countries agreedto “reiterate our commitment to reinvigorate our trading relationship and toensure that the benefits of our economic relationship are widely shared andsustainable.
Since NAFTA came into effect, merchandise trade among the NAFTApartners has more than tripled, reaching US$946.1 billion in 2008. Over thatperiod, Canada-U.S. trade has nearly tripled, while trade between Mexico andthe U.S. has more than quadrupled. [C$ figure = $1.0 trillion]
Today, the NAFTA partners exchange about US$2.6 billion in merchandiseon a daily basis with each other. That’s about US$108 million per hour. [C$figures = $2.8 billion and $115 million]
Since NAFTA came into effect, the North American economy has morethan doubled in size. The combined gross domestic product (GDP) for Canada, the United States, and Mexico surpassed US$17 trillion in 2008, upfrom US$7.6 trillion in 1993. [C$ figures = $18.2 trillion and $9.8 trillion]