10 Updates
The State of North America After the Trilateral Summit?
Photo Credit: Forbes Business

The State of North America After the Trilateral Summit?

Feb 24 2014, 5:33pm CST | by

By: Duncan Wood, Director, Mexico Institute In our most recent publication , the Mexico Institute at the Woodrow Wilson Center argued that, whereas a trilateral vision for the region is necessary...

Filed under: news

 
 
 

21 weeks ago

The State of North America After the Trilateral Summit?

Feb 24 2014, 5:33pm CST | by

By: Duncan Wood, Director, Mexico Institute

In our most recent publication , the Mexico Institute at the Woodrow Wilson Center argued that, whereas a trilateral vision for the region is necessary for long-term progress toward strategic goals, a dual-bilateral approach may be complementary and even achieve more in the short term. Throughout the 20 year history of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the bilateral approach has more often than not trumped trilateralism, and cooperation in the region has moved ahead accordingly.

Last week’s trilateral North American leaders’ summit in Toluca, Mexico represented an important opportunity for the two presidents and prime minister to meet, and to discuss the future of the region. Four areas of cooperation were discussed that hold real promise. However, it may be that the bilateral talks that took place around the summit prove to be of more lasting significance.

Lets begin with the trilateral agreements. Although the media and analysts reacted with a collective yawn to the joint declaration, there were important new announcements in the areas of transportation, borders, energy , and research. In the first of these areas, the three premiers agreed to develop a North American Transportation Plan that will focus on the movement of freight across the region. Although details are sketchy, and there is still just a commitment to develop the Plan, it could prove to be an important step in the direction of improving the movement of valuable goods across the North American economic space and linking together and improving key transportation infrastructure.

With regards to borders, the three leaders made progress on a program that has been on the cards for a while now, namely the harmonization of different trusted traveler programs. The North American Trusted Traveler Program will bring about the mutual recognition of all existing trusted traveler programs in the region, facilitating the movement of those who frequently cross the region’s borders.

The third area of agreement centered on energy issues, with the three leaders calling for a North American Energy Ministers Meeting later in 2014 to “define areas for strong trilateral cooperation on energy”. What these areas might be is still unknown, but with the successful passage of energy reform legislation through Mexico’s Congress last December, mainly of the previously existing barriers to cooperation on oil and gas markets have now disappeared. A central question will be investment in and planning for energy infrastructure (refineries, pipelines and transmission lines), although the current impasse over the Keystone XL Pipeline will make Canada-U.S. talks complicated, to say the least.

Lastly, the leaders agreed to a Trilateral Research, Development and Innovation Council. This initiative is sufficiently vague and general to be difficult to evaluate at this time, but the idea of “encouraging opportunities for North American leadership and a trilateral network of entrepreneurs, as well as economic development efforts in highly integrated regions, like the Pacific Northwest Economic Region and the CaliBaja mega region” is a sound one. Existing initiatives at the bilateral level between Mexico and the United States have already shown promise and it is hoped that the experience can be repeated at the trilateral level.

So there is some reason to be optimistic after the Toluca Summit at the trilateral level. But the summit was important for another reason. The meetings that took place between senior cabinet officials from the US and Mexico, particularly during the lunch break, point to a growing comfort level and increasing socialization between the two governments. In particular, the meeting that took place between Mexico’s Finance Minister, Luis Videgaray and Economy Mjnister, Ildefonso Guajardo, on the one hand, and the U.S. government’s Commerce Secretary, Penny Pritzker and Trade Representative Michael Froman on the other, was reportedly a very successful one, with positive updates on the High Level Economic Dialogue, Mexico-U.S. Entrepreneurship and Innovation Council (MUSEIC), and constructive talks about the Transpacific Partnership (TPP) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). These conversations , following on from a recent visit by Pritzker to Mexico, serve to deepen the understanding and trust between both sides.

We now also have to recognize that the leaders’ meeting took place at a time when both President Obama and Peña Nieto (and their respective security chiefs) must have known about the imminent operation against El Chapo Guzman, successfully concluded on the following Saturday. This points to a much higher level of coordination between the two sides on security and organized crime than we had previously suspected, and to the ongoing importance of such collaboration.

The Toluca summit may well turn out to be a more important event than we first imagined. Trilateralism will survive in North America, but even if it doesn’t play a leading role, the bilateral processes that take place around its edges will keep the U.S. and Mexico intimately involved with each other.

Duncan Wood is the Director of the Mexico Institute at the Wilson Center. 

Source: Forbes Business

 
Update
10

6 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Cambodia's Famous Battambang Circus
KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the De ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

6 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Newcastle United Training Session
KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was broken into by robb ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

6 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Federal Aviation Administration Bans All US Flights To Israel
KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejected by the ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

6 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minis ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

6 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

INDIA-CHINA-DIPLOMACY-TRADE
PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Selatan’ in t ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

6 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Government Weekly Cabinet Meeting
KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 million ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

6 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustap ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

7 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Iskandar Johor Open - Previews
JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year invol ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

7 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM - Day One
PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramadan Bazaar Scheme ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
1

7 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Kinrara Dam ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

47 killed in Taiwan as plane makes botched landing (Roundup)
Taipei, July 23 (IANS) Forty-seven people on board a Taiwanese TransAsia Airways plane were killed in a failed emergency landing in the island county of Penghu Wednesday, Taiwan's transportation authority has confirmed.
 
 
47 killed in Taiwan plane's botched landing
Taipei, July 23 (IANS) Forty-seven people on board a Taiwanese TransAsia Airways plane were killed in a failed emergency landing in the island county of Penghu Wednesday, Taiwan's transportation authority has confirmed.
 
 
51 killed in Taiwan plane emergency landing
Beijing, July 23 (IANS) At least 51 people were killed and seven others injured when a passenger plane with Taiwan's TransAsia Airways made an emergency landing on the outlying island county of Penghu Wednesday, media reported.
 
 
High salt ups heart disease risk in diabetics
Tokyo, July 23 (IANS) People with Type-2 diabetes have more to add to their list of dietary restrictions as researchers have found that a high salt diet may double their risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Mobile Wallet May Launch With iPhone 6
Apple already has hundreds of millions of credit cards on file with the help of iTunes, although now they are hoping to move into the mobile wallet world with the help of major credit card companies.Earlier this year...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Atletico welcome back Cardoso, hints at Torres's return
Madrid, July 24 (IANS) Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo says he is delighted that Portuguese midfielder Tiago Cardoso has made a U-turn to re-sign with the club while at the same time dropping a big hint that...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Apple On An Acquisition Rampage
When the fiscal year began in 2013, there was no telling what Apple would be up to for 2014. The company has been staying incredibly busy, though, and they have purchased more companies than ever in the past nine months...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Mutilated bear gets new lower jaw in Mexico
Mexico City, July 24 (IANS/EFE) A team of surgeons and veterinarians in Mexico implanted a titanium lower jaw in a bear that was mutilated, an official said. The bear, named Invictus, underwent surgery Sunday and...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Brazilian president exonerated in probe of refinery deal
Brasilia, July 24 (IANS/EFE) Brazil's federal audit tribunal has said that President Dilma Rousseff bore no responsibility for state-controlled oil giant Petrobras's ultimately disastrous acquisition of a US refinery...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Frenchman Mathieu beefs up Barca defence
Madrid, July 24 (IANS) French central defender Jeremy Mathieu was all set to fly out to Peru with Valencia when the La Liga club sealed a deal with Spanish giants Barcelona, invoking the buyout clause in the 30-year-...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Contador rules out Vuelta return
Madrid, July 24 (IANS) Spanish cyclist Alberto Cotador has confirmed that he will be forced to pull out of this year's Vuelta de Espana (Tour of Spain) cycle race as a result of the injury he suffered recently in the...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
iPhone Sales Set New Records
The iPhone is the life-force behind Apple after they announced another stellar quarter in 2014. In the third quarter, Apple sold 35.2 million iPhones, which is up 13 percent from the previous year.While that number is...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Blake to miss rest of the season after surgery
Kingston (Jamaica), July 24 (IANS/CMC) Former world 100m champion Yohan Blake will miss the remainder of the season after undergoing surgery in Germany to repair a damaged hamstring muscle. The Jamaican sprinter...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Can't think of anything better than coaching Germany: Loew
Berlin, July 24 (IANS) Contrary to expectations that he would retire after the World Cup triumph, Joachim Loew will see out his contract and lead Germany into the Euro 2016. This was confirmed by the coach in an...
Read more on Sport Balla