North America’s Anti-Brexit Moment

6/28/2016 Bloomberg View

This week’s meeting among the leaders of the U.S., Mexico and Canada might have been a mostly forgettable formality — had British voters not just decided to leave the European Union. Add in Donald Trump’s shrill threats to tear up trade agreements and build walls, and presidents Barack Obama and Enrique Pena Nieto and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau face a need to reaffirm, and strengthen, their own growing ties.

Luckily, these leaders have a pretty good story to tell. Canada, Mexico and the U.S. are one another’s most important trading partners. The U.S. exports more than four times as much to Mexico and Canada as it does to China, and more than twice as much as to the EU. Well-developed supply chains mean that more than 40 percent of the value of U.S. imports from Mexico, and 25 percent of those from Canada, originates in the U.S., compared with 2 to 5 percent for the EU, China, India and South Korea. Since 1993, North American trade has more than tripled, and cross-border investment has quintupled.

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North America Must Compete Globally

6/28/2016 Forbes

By Earl Anthony Wayne and Gary Hufbauer

NAFTAContrary to campaign rhetoric, the integration of North America over the past quarter century has successfully grown the continental economy and enabled it to compete in global markets. And, in North America this has been done without the centralized institutions that UK voters just rejected. The June 29 North American Leaders’ Summit in Ottawa offers an opportunity to launch even smarter collaboration across Canada, Mexico, and the United States that respects the sovereignty of each partner. President Barack Obama, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and President Enrique Peña Nieto can approve a range of actions to make the North American economy more competitive and productive in the years ahead.

North American trade networks and continental investment ties have generated millions of jobs. North America is the best performing continent among advanced countries. But it still needs to create more and better jobs. Economic growth is too slow and productivity is far below par. An ambitious work agenda coming from the Leaders’ Summit can help boost the three economies.

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Trudeau looks for reset with Mexico and leadership role with Americas

06/28/2016 CBC News 

three amigos

The official state visit by Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto in Ottawa today is a chance for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to not only reset the bilateral relationship, but also for Canada to show it can play a leadership role in the Americas.

Trudeau’s meeting with Pena Nieto comes ahead of Wednesday’s North American Leaders Summit with U.S. President Barack Obama, a gathering also known as the Three Amigos.

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Upcoming Event | Ideas for a Stronger North America ahead of the North American Leaders Summit

North AmericaWHEN: Tuesday, June 28, 9:00-11:00 AM

WHERE: 6th Floor Board Room, Woodrow Wilson Center

Click to RSVP

On June 29, President Obama, President Peña Nieto, and Prime Minister Trudeau will meet in Ottawa for the 2016 North American Leaders Summit (NALS). North America is already the largest trading bloc in the world, with a GDP of over 20 trillion dollars and more than a trillion dollars of annual trade. The Leaders Summit will set the stage for future North American cooperation across a wide range of areas, including economic competitiveness, regional security, energy and climate change. It also represents an important opportunity for the leaders to clearly articulate the benefits of enhanced regional cooperation to a public that is increasingly focused on understanding the benefits and costs of global engagement.

The Mexico and Canada Institutes of the Woodrow Wilson Center are pleased to invite you to a discussion on North American cooperation ahead of the North American Leaders Summit.

Click to RSVP

Canada still thinks Mexico belongs on its ‘safe country’ list for refugees

06/20/16 Vice News

As the number of refugees and displaced people worldwide reaches a record 65 million, debate continues over whether asylum seekers — especially LGBT people — from countries deemed to be safe, should be granted refugee status abroad.

Several countries in Europe have compiled “safe country of origin” lists, whereby anyone from those countries will likely to be sent home if they try to seek asylum in another country.

In North America, Canada has been relying heavily since 2013 on its safe country list to guide who should be blocked from obtaining refuge, a process the government argues is meant to ensure “genuine” refugees are resettled. And now, Canada is facing fresh criticisms for listing Mexico among its 42 “safe” nations, especially as the LGBT community there and people living with HIV continue to face rampant violence and discrimination.

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Building Borders That Foster Security And Prosperity In North America

5/24/2016 Forbes

san-ysidro-border-crossing-by-flickr-user-otzbergBy Earl Anthony Wayne and Christopher Wilson

Canada, Mexico and the United States are collaborating to enhance security and foster prosperity at North America’s borders, while respecting each nation’s sovereignty.  Prime Minister Trudeau, President Peña Nieto and President Obama can give this effort a big boost when they meet for the North American Leaders Summit (NALS) on June 29 in Canada.  Given the contentious nature of the public and political debates about border security right now, it will be especially important for the leaders to articulate clearly what it means to build twenty-first century borders that are smart, effective, and meet both the security and competitiveness needs of North America. They should also bless a strong, substantive work agenda to make those objectives reality.

The three countries trade some $3.6 billion in goods and services each day.  Over a million citizens of the three nations cross the borders as part of their daily routine.  Border management tasks are enormous.  But, officials, the private sector and the many states, provinces and cities that benefit from border trade and travel see the tremendous value of a North America in which borders are places of connection and cooperation at least as much as division.  Around our borders, the three governments fight illicit activity; help our economies by facilitating legal trade and transit; and work to protect all three societies from threats ranging from terrorism to invasive species and diseases.

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Global Investment Guide: How To Invest In Mexico

5/18/16 Forbes

Mexico BricksLooking at the country through an economist’s lens, Mexico’s economy can be described as mostly predictable and rarely volatile. However, the same cannot be said of Mexico’s stock and bond markets and currency. Given strong links to the United States’ economy, Mexico’s macroeconomic variables tend to move broadly in conjunction with the ups and downs of its northern neighbor. When the U.S. is expanding, so is Mexico; if the U.S. is in a recession, so is Mexico. However, Mexico’s asset prices tend to act and react to their compatriot emerging market asset classes – which are much more volatile. That said, Mexico’s principal asset classes tend to be “low beta” versions relative to most emerging markets (EM), so that when EM equities or bonds do very well, Mexico lags, but when EM sells off, Mexico acts like a relative safe haven. The Mexican peso is another matter.

Mexico has several things going for it. As mentioned above, the country has forged strong links with the U.S., especially after the formation of NAFTA. As the country has an abundance of relatively cheap labor, it was an ideal, close-proximity destination for manufacturing plants from the U.S. and Canada. Through time, the country has benefited from technology transfer and has been able to increase the skills of its workforce. Second, for most of the last few decades, well-trained and well-respected policymakers have been at the helm of Mexico’s central bank and finance ministry. Under their leadership, Mexico has been able to weather several global crises and also transitions to different presidential leadership, by implementing conservative fiscal policy and prudent monetary policy.

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