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UC co-hosts forum on NAFTA and U.S.-Mexico relations

President Napolitano discusses the importance of trade to the future of the Western U.S.-Mexico relationship with, from left to right, Maria Echaveste, co-founder and senior advisor for the Nueva Vista Group; Ambassador of Mexico to the United States, Gerónimo Gutiérrez; and California Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de León during a forum hosted by UC and Tecnológico de Monterrey. Credit: UC


If there is one thing that leading experts on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) all seem to agree on, it is this: It needs to be modernized to reflect the realities of the trillion-dollar global digital economy.

That was one consensus to emerge at a Sept. 21 forum on NAFTA and U.S.-Mexico relations co-hosted by the UC and Tecnológico de Monterrey.

The other widely held view: The United States, Mexico and Canada gain strength and prosperity by continuing to work collectively on shared issues, including trade, climate change, immigration and education.

President Napolitano, in a conversation with Alejandro Poiré, dean of the School of Social Sciences and Government at Tecnológico de Monterrey, moderated by Ron Brownstein, senior editor of The Atlantic and senior political analyst at CNN, noted that if California were its own country, it would be the sixth-largest power in the world.

Not only does California share people, history and culture with its neighbor to the south, but it has deep and growing business ties with Mexico.

“Half a million [California] jobs are directly tied to NAFTA,” Napolitano said. “As a result, it’s more evident to Californians, the value that NAFTA brings.”

Read full article about the forum.

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