NAFTA as a Model of Development

The Benefits and Costs of Merging High- and Low-Wage Areas

Edited by Richard S. Belous & Jonathan Lemco

Subjects: Labor Economics
Paperback : 9780791425701, 216 pages, August 1995
Hardcover : 9780791425695, 216 pages, August 1995

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Table of contents


by Malcolm R. Lovell, Jr. , Dieter Dettke, and Paul H. Boeker


About the Editors

About the Authors

NAFTA as a Model of Development: The Benefits and Costs of Merging High- and Low-Wage Areas

by Richard S. Belous and Jonathan Lemco

Part I. Setting the Stage

1. The NAFTA Development Model of Combining High- and Low-Wage Areas: An Introduction

by Richard S. Belous and Jonathan Lemco

Part II. Implications of the NAFTA for Wages and Investment

2. The NAFTA and Wage Convergence: A Case of Winners and Losers

by Clark W. Reynolds

3. The NAFTA, a Social Charter, and Economic Growth

by Harley Shaiken

4. The NAFTA's Winners and Losers: A Focus on Investment

by Isaac Cohen

5. The NAFTA and Downward Wage Pressure

by Richard Rothstein

6. Dynamic Integration, Foreign Investment, and Open Regionalism in the NAFTA and the Americas

by Van R. Whiting, Jr.

Part III. Implications of the NAFTA for Development

7. Expanding the NAFTA? From Early Pan-Americanism to Hemispheric Economic Integration

by Joseph Grunwald

8. The NAFTA and Developing Countries

by Sidney Weintraub

9. Dynamic Gains from Intra-regional Trade in Latin America

by Rudolf M. Buitelaar

Part IV. Mexican Perspectives

10. A Critical View of a NAFTA Including Mexico

by Adolfo Aguilar Zinser

11. The NAFTA: A Mexican Search for Development

by Gustavo del Castillo V.

12. Mexican Economic Development and the NAFTA

by Daniel Szabo

13. Mexico's Interests and the NAFTA

by Jorge Bustamante

Part V. Canadian Perspectives

14. Canada's Interests and the NAFTA

by Ronald Wonnacott

15. The Development Impact of the NAFTA: A Canadian Perspective

by Ann Weston

Part VI. Industry and Labor Perspectives

16. Global Trends and the Impact on Business in Latin America in the 1990s

by John D. Tessier

17. A Labor Perspective on the NAFTA

by William C. Doherty

18. The Sector Advisory Process and the NAFTA

by Eugene W. Zeltmann

19. Trade Liberalization and Mexico

by Juan de Nigris

Part VII. Regional Trading Blocs, Social Policies, and Cross-Border Constituencies

20. Can the EC Social Charter Be a Model for the NAFTA?

by Reiner Hoffmann

21. The Role of Nongovernmental Organizations and the NAFTA

by Cathryn L. Thorup


Examines whether NAFTA will produce increased or decreased wages in the regional trading blocs emerging in Europe, North America, and East Asia as a result of its uniting of high and low wage areas and identifies the winners and losers in various labor markets.


This book discusses the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in terms of its implications for job creation, reduced tariffs, and increased investment. Although the regional trading blocs merging in Europe, North America, and East Asia differ strikingly, there is one basic feature common to each--the formation of regional trading blocs involves a uniting of high- and low-wage areas. The authors address this issue directly, questioning whether NAFTA will promote upward or downward convergence of compensation rates, unit labor costs, and benefit levels. Equally important, they consider whether this trading arrangement will promote economic growth, investment, and efficiency. Viewpoints from the U. S., Canada, and Mexico and from the business and labor communities are included.

Richard S. Belous is Vice President and Chief Economist at the National Planning Association and Adjunct Professor at George Washington University. Jonathan Lemco is Executive Director of the International Center for Family Enterprise, a Senior Fellow at the National Planning Association, and Adjunct Professor for Political Science at Johns Hopkins University-SAIS.


"Appropriate for general audiences as well as for classes in economic development, political economy, and North American integration, this book could also be useful for courses in international economics because it describes so many important theoretical concerns. Most appealing is the explicit attention paid to NAFTA as the first major attempt at freer trade and investment between countries at such widely different stages of development. " -- Sarah Stevens, St. Lawrence University

"The book provides an excellent introduction to the debate of economic integration and its benefits as a model for development. It supplies a good overview of both negative and positive reactions to NAFTA, with about a third of the contributors in favor, a third neutral, and a third against. It is an evenhanded compilation of views on the subject by academics, business, and labor. " -- Gilbert R. Winham, Dalhousie University