University of California
NAFTA and the future of the U.S-Mexico Relationship
A collection of thought pieces
The UC San Diego Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies commissioned this series of thought pieces for a forum hosted by the University of California and Tecnológico de Monterrey in Washington, DC entitled The Future of NAFTA and
the State of U.S.-Mexico Relations. These essays provided the intellectual cornerstone for discussions at the event with renowned academics, policymakers, and business leaders.
In the essays, faculty from across the University of California provide perspectives on what NAFTA has meant for North America and the changes in global trade and production since its creation, exploring:
• The need for investment in education and workforce development to
prepare workers to participate in the 21st century economy
• The complex and often counterintuitive connections between trade,
migration and labor markets
• The importance of updating trade agreements to include digital products
and opportunities for trade in services like health care
Authored against the backdrop of the first and second rounds of NAFTA renegotiation talks, the pieces examine what we got wrong and what we got right almost three decades ago during the initial negotiations. And while the
outcome of current renegotiations is far from clear, they offer an understanding of the importance of an integrated North America to the prosperity of the region, as well as the immediate damage that would be caused by the cancellation of the agreement.