MEXICO AS A POTENTIAL MARKET FOR CENTRAL AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN PRODUCTS
Jorge Salazar-Carrillo Irma T. de Alonso
This chapter examines and evaluates trade relations between Mexico and the countries of Central America and the Caribbean. One of the main objectives is to determine whether recent trade agreements between Mexico and these various countries have strengthened economic ties and cooperation within the region. During the course of the evaluation, suggestions are offered on how existing trade agreements may be modified in terms of product lists so as to further the goal of regional economic integration. In the next section there is a discussion of the methodology used in two studies by the Institutes of Economic and Social Research in the Caribbean Basin (IESCARIBE) which provide the foundation for this analysis. The third section presents a brief overview of how trade has progressed in this region in terms of the institutions that were established to oversee and facilitate trade and also any important agreements that may have resulted. The fourth and fifth sections analyze trade between Mexico and the countries of Central America and between Mexico and the Caribbean as a whole, respectively. The final section closes the chapter with a discussion of the future prospects of Mexico's free trade agreement with the United States, with emphasis on how this agreement may provide windfall benefits, not only to Mexico, but to the entire region at large.
The analyses below are based on information drawn from two studies undertaken by IESCARIBE. The first study was sponsored by AID-ROCAP and was actually a joint project between IESCARIBE and the Secretaria Permanente del Tratado de Integración Económica Centro Americana (SIECA) (see Trejos Gollás , et al., 1988). The second study was cosponsored by the Interamerican Development Bank, (see Gollás, 1989). The AID-ROCAP results are discussed in the fourth section and the IESCARIBE-IDB follow.