Toward Social Regionalism in the Americas
66 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2004
This article offers detailed consideration of three distinct approaches to the development of a social dimension to regional integration in the Americas, in NAFTA, CARICOM and MERCOSUR. It also analyzes the developments at the level of the OAS's Inter-American Conference of Ministers of Labor, to assess the potential of that parallel process of summitry to influence the FTAA process. The author acknowledges that each initiative is strikingly unequal to the task of counterbalancing the adverse impacts of deepening economic integration. However, the author argues that the more telling story is not in what is obviously missing, but in the regional pressures to challenge neo-liberal globalization, and in the opportunity to realize regionally what may be more difficult to achieve in the first instance internationally. In the process, an integrated vision of the social and the economic in regional trade, or "social regionalism", is emerging.
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