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Agricultural Trade and Economic Integration in the Western Hemisphere: Current Status

  • Agricultural Science
  • Economics
  • Political Science


Economic Integration in the Western Hemisphere ECONOMIC INTEGRATION IN THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE Edited by Constanza Valdes and Terry Roe April 1997 PROCEEDINGS OF A SYMPOSIUM SPONSORED BY THE INTERNATIONAL AGRICULTURAL TRADE RESEARCH CONSORTIUM AND THE INTER-AMERICAN INSTITUTE FOR COOPERATION ON AGRICULTURE JUNE 7-9, 1995 SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA Agricultural Trade and Economic Integration in the Western Hemisphere: Current Status Constanza Valdes, John Wainio and Mark Gehlhar, Economic Research Service, U.S.Department of Agriculture The recent Summit of the Americas, the implementation of NAFTA and other regional trade agreements, and the member government approval of the Uruguay Round of the GATT provided renewed interest in regional trading arrangements. Many countries in the region view economic integration as a preparatory step towards global competition and have as a priority to continue within the framework of market-oriented reform. This report focuses on the Western Hemisphere's growing interest in closer economic association and the patterns of trade for agricultural products including the characteristics of regional trade with the rest of the world, mutual trade within the region intra-American trade and an overview of U.S. agricultural trade with its neighbors in the hemisphere. The United States and the rest of the WH are major agricultural net exporters, and on a similar scale. They ship between $25 and $30 billion annually in agricultural products to the rest of the world and between $10 and $15 billion to each other. Each represents about one-quarter of the other's export market and about half of the other's import supply. Recent economic and trade liberalization in Latin America has increased trade in the Hemisphere. New regional trading blocks are likely to have a similar effect of increasing overall trade volume, but specific impacts on individual countries and commodities are less certain. The Western Hemisphere (WH) encompasses the U.S., Canada, and La

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