Posted by: bklunk | April 29, 2007

Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?

Quite an interesting piece here.  Europe had become somewhat less interested in Latin America a decade ago or so and there was more talk about the importance of inter-hemispheric affairs–the U.S. joining with other American countries in initiatives like NAFTA, FTAA, CAFTA, etc. We might read this not only as an example of economic globalization, but also as a sign of a changing U.S. presence.

Trade – the EU and Costa Rica « International Politics

Business leaders in Costa Rica are being given the opportunity to discuss and express their opinion on an association agreement between Central America and the European Union. This “internal consulting” period is intended to “develope a solid and articulated national position on the agreement, which would include a free-trade agreement and increased political cooperation.”

This was interesting to see how the European Union acts as a cohesive economic unit in their trade agreements.

It is also interesting to tie this into the ideas of liberal commercialists (who say that trade is good, and restrictions are bad). Costa Rica isn’t exactly in the European Region – this is yet another example of globalization in the economic realm.

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  1. It is quite interesting that the European Union is discussing a free trade agreement with a country no where near them. Is this a precursor to a new wave of free global trade yet to come? The implications of a decision like this and others, similarly, may take the world market into a new realm of trade.

    With free trade between the EU and Costa Rica, one would hope Costa Rica would benefit through this new extended market in which agricultural goods and other products could be sold and in turn increase their net exports. If more goods are sold at market, then production will increase to meet the new demand for goods. In turn, employment would increase, real wages would rise, and in the future it would raise the standard of living as well. This is one possible outcome that I am sure would have significant implications for the rest of Central America. Costa Rica would also hope to benefit in the long run as technology could flow freely between the two entities which would further increase Costa Rica’s production capabilities and also their productivity. It is not unthinkable to then suspect a ripple effect may take place.

    You begin to wonder whether these regional free trade clusters (i.e. NAFTA, CAFTA, etc.) will eventually grow into a global free market and what implications that would have on the economic status and social/cultural aspects of all countries around the globe. It will be interesting to see how this decision between the EU and Costa Rica plays out and what effects it may have on other countries in Central America.

  2. Historically speaking, this is a monumental event in terms of global sovereignty and the United States presence in its own hemisphere.

    In 1823, President Monroe issued the Monroe Doctrine, a proclamation of United States sovereignty in its hemisphere. This history piece of legislation has been cited throughout history in American foreign relations. Most notably, John F. Kennedy flexed the proverbial muscles of the Monroe Doctrine when he drew upon the legislation to speak out against the communist overthrow of Cuba, saying that Russia was overstepping the boundaries set by the doctrine.

    This economic agreement between the EU and Central America signals a shift from the “We own the Western Hemisphere” mentality of American foreign politics. To suggest the Monroe Doctrine would be a viable approach to foreign relations in a era of globalization is unrealistic, but perhaps this is a benchmark in a global society, with less and less power vested in yesterday’s superpowers.

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