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‘Few would cite the SPP as a formula for progress’, say Manley and Giffin

Former deputy prime minister John Manley and former US ambassador to Canada Gordon Giffin write in the Globe and Mail today that, “We do not…agree that the trilateral framework suggested by NAFTA should be automatically transferred to all aspects of North American relations.”

Manley and Giffin write, “The Security and Prosperity Partnership is a trilateral framework established in 2006. Few would cite this as a formula for progress. In fact, if the two borders are dysfunctional, as our friends suggest, it is evidence of the difficulty in making progress with three parties at the table, rather than two.”

Their op-ed, which counters one earlier by Robert Pastor and Andres Rozental arguing for the inclusion of Mexico, states, “We and our two friends all collaborated on an important study for the Council on Foreign Relations that advocated advancing the concept of a North American Community, a vision we continue to share. But such a goal can be achieved only if Canada and the United States define a new and evolutionary template for our bilateral progress. It will take that anchor in the northern part of the continent to make continentwide progress possible.”

They conclude, “If the concept of a real North American Community is ever going to be realized, it will be because leadership has been shown by the northern partners.”

This op-ed suggests that the Security and Prosperity Partnership has been derailed, while the push for deep integration is ongoing.

The full op-ed can be read at http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090504.wconafta05/BNStory/specialComment/home