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NAFTA at 20 … even Mexican beer isn’t Mexican

3 January 2014

Timothy Wise, policy research director at Tufts University’s Global Development and Environment Institute, on the effects of NAFTA on Mexico’s agriculture and food security.  Even our beer is made with imported barley. 

Twenty years ago, on January 1, 1994, NAFTA took effect, and Mexico was the poster child for the wonders of free trade. The promises seemed endless.

Mexico would enter the “First World” of developed countries on the crest of rising trade and foreign investment. Its dynamic manufacturing sector would create so many jobs it would not only end the US immigration problem but absorb millions of peasant farmers freed from their unproductive toil in the fields. Mexico could import cheap corn and export electronics.

So much for promises.

[…]   twenty years into NAFTA, 55 million Mexicans — about half the population — are estimated to be in poverty, many without secure access to food.

By far, this is the best short article I’ve seen on NAFTA: How beer explains 20 years of NAFTA’s devastating effects on Mexico

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