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GBF October 2005

Global Business Forum

Free Trade in the Americas

Financial System

Most countries of the Western Hemisphere are engaged in regional trade agreements, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the Market of the South (MERCOSUR). Most are also involved in hemispheric negotiations to create a broad Free Trade Area for the Americas, and in global negotiations under the WTO to advance the Doha Development Agenda, in the hemispheric and global negotiations have caused several countries to pursue bilateral trade agreements.

This conference will assess the current state of trade agreements and negotiations in the Western Hemisphere, and will examine how bilateral, regional, and global arrangements may reinforce one another or work at cross purposes. Ultimately, we will hope to point the way toward more fruitful cooperations.

On October 6-7, 2005, leading scholars and officials from Canada, the United States, and Latin America will examine the nature of Western Hemisphere trade agreements their implications for hemispheric relations and the multilateral trading system.

This conference will analyze interactions among the different trade strategies that have developed in the hemisphere. Specific topics will include:

  • New Trade Strategies in the Americas
  • Regional Free Trade Agreements
  • Bilateral Free Trade Agreements
  • Results of Free Trade


“We recognize the significant contribution that economic integration, including the FTAA, will make to the attainment of the objectives established in the Summit of the Americas process: strengthening democracy, creating prosperity and realizing human potential.”
North American Trade Ministerial Declaration
November 20, 2003

“We must be flexible because one-size-fits-all negotiations are not always the answer. But the ultimate goal will remain constant, free trade from northernmost Canada to the tip of Cape Horn.”
U.S. President George W. Bush
October 31, 2000

“We believe that the FTAA's main purpose should be to benefit the smaller, poorer economies and regions of America, reduce the underdevelopment in Latin America, and reduce the number of poor families. And it has to be an agreement where the whole hemispheric bloc will become more competitive against the Asian or European blocs.”
Mexican President Vicente Fox
December 22, 2003

“Sovereignty in the 21st century is increasingly about open, democratic, and accountable governments building partnerships at all levels, thereby creating a more secure and prosperous world for all.All of us must face up to the challenges of globalization by embracing comprehensive trade liberalization, fiscal prudence, economic and investment reforms, and a commitment to knowledge and innovation.”
Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin
January 12, 2004

View the Global Business Forum Schedule for October 2005
View the Speakers for October 2005
About the Conference
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