Most of the existing literature on North American integration advances the argument that despite the vast economic interdependence between Mexico, Canada and the United States, there is limited or no political integration developing between these countries. Such an alleged lack of political integration lies on the nature of the most important accord in the region, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which is aimed at promoting economic exchanges between these countries.
In this book, Iván Farías Pelcastre argues that the process of regional integration in North America is more substantial than previous studies claim. He shows that transnational actors and regional institutions have jointly managed to increase the levels of policy interdependence between Canada, Mexico and the United States, hence the political integration between them. Using theoretical approaches that derive from the European experience on integration, the book sheds new light on the actions of transnational actors and regional institutions, and their effects on the North American integration process. Through empirical analysis, it demonstrates that the regional institutions created by NAFTA, as well as its side and parallel agreements, have contributed to build a regional policy framework which has advanced the welfare and protected the public interest in the North American countries. Farías Pelcastre concludes by making a case for the advancement of these actions and decisions and their support from national and subnational governments, communities and other stakeholders.
Written accessibly, and contributing to key contemporary debates of regional integration, this book should be read by all those interested in US-Mexico, US-Canada, and North American trilateral relations.