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SBU) An incremental and pragmatic package of tasks for a new North American Initiative (NAI) will likely gain the most support among Canadian policymakers. Our research leads us to conclude that such a package should tackle both "security" and "prosperity" goals. This fits the recommendations of Canadian economists who have assessed the options for continental integration. While in principle many of them support more ambitious integration goals, like a customs union/single market and/or single currency, most believe the incremental approach is most appropriate at this time, and all agree that it helps pave the way to these goals if and when North Americans choose to pursue them.
¶3. (SBU) The economic payoff of the prospective North American initiative - in terms of higher incomes and greater competitiveness - is available, but its size and timing are unpredictable, so it should not be oversold. Still, a respectable economic case has been made for such an initiative, and this message spells it out. We believe that, given growing Canadian concern about "border risk" and its effects on investment, a focus on the "security" side could also produce the most substantial economic/trade benefits.
A NOTE OF CAUTION
¶9. (SBU) There is little basis on which to estimate the size of the "upside" gains from an integration initiative concentrating on non-tariff barriers of the kind contained in NAI. For this reason, we cannot make claims about how large the benefits might be on a national or continental scale. When advocating NAI, it would be better to highlight specific gains to individual firms, industries or travelers, and especially consumers.
Originally posted by tothetenthpower
reply to post by bigfatfurrytexan
Well the idea of the NAU stretches many decades and leaders in all three countries. I believe this plan was always a long term thing, but I think it's becoming increasingly important to the PTB to have this done as soon as possible.