IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/h/sls/secfds/15.html
   My bibliography  Save this book chapter

North American Economic Integration and Globalization

In: The State of Economics in Canada: Festschrift in Honour of David Slater

Author

Listed:
  • Morley Gunderson

Abstract

Morley Gunderson presents an overview of issues related to North American economic integration and globalization. He provides a particularly balanced perspective, a rarity in this area of highly charged, ideology-driven and emotional debate. He first notes that economic integration has both a deepening and widening dimension and enumerates the various aspects of these two dimensions in the context of North American integration, noting that in practice the different dimensions complement one another in a self-reinforcing fashion. He also points out that deeper and wider economic integration can foster internal consolidation since this integration is generally regarded as a precondition for external competitiveness. Gunderson pays particular attention to the issue of policy integration. He argues that the emerging competitive pressures on the North from low-cost, less regulated jurisdictions in the South is the most important consequence of trade liberalization and globalization, although there is still insufficient evidence of harmonization leading to the lowest common denominator. The policy-making process is now subject to the forces of competition that apply to business and labour. He argues that the laws and regulations that will be under the most pressure will be those that are the most inefficient, that is those that protect interest group rents and impose costs without commensurate benefits. Gunderson notes that integration represents a threat to distributional or equity-oriented policies that do not have positive feedback effects on efficiency even when the population considers such policies highly desirable. Raising taxes to finance these policies may not be the solution if mobile factors of production consequently flee to lower-tax jurisdictions. He documents the wide range of policy responses to the potential policy vacuum created by globalization and integration, including the NAFTA labour side agreement, the inclusion of social clauses in trade agreements, corporate codes of conduct, social labelling, and consumer boycotts, transnational efforts amongst unions, social groups and NGOs and union-to-union cooperation. But he finds that effectiveness of these responses to date is moot. Gunderson raises the issue of whether the more circumscribed role of governments and greater role of market forces will in fact benefit the most disadvantaged. He notes that so far this has not been the case, although whether this negative trend will continue is an open question. He concludes by cautioning that the long-run sustainability of integration depends on the equitable sharing of the efficiency gains arising from this process.

Suggested Citation

  • Morley Gunderson, 2001. "North American Economic Integration and Globalization," The State of Economics in Canada: Festschrift in Honour of David Slater,in: Patrick Grady & Andrew Sharpe (ed.), The State of Economics in Canada: Festschrift in Honour of David Slater, pages 355-377 Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
  • Handle: RePEc:sls:secfds:15
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.csls.ca/events/slt01/gunderson.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Kimberly Ann. Elliott & Richard B. Freeman, 2004. "White Hats or Don Quixotes? Human Rights Vigilantes in the Global Economy," NBER Chapters,in: Emerging Labor Market Institutions for the Twenty-First Century, pages 47-98 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Sikkink, Kathryn, 1993. "Human rights, principled issue-networks, and sovereignty in Latin America," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 47(03), pages 411-441, June.
    3. George Hoberg, 2000. "Canada and North American Integration," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 26(s2), pages 35-50, August.
    4. Keith Head & John Ries, 1998. "Immigration and Trade Creation: Econometric Evidence from Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(1), pages 47-62, February.
    5. John F. Helliwell, 2001. "Canada: Life beyond the Looking Glass," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 107-124, Winter.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Canada; North America; NAFTA; Integration; Border Effects; Policy Integration; Competitiveness;

    JEL classification:

    • O51 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - U.S.; Canada
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • F42 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - International Policy Coordination and Transmission
    • F02 - International Economics - - General - - - International Economic Order and Integration

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sls:secfds:15. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (CSLS). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/cslssca.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.