Global Insider: Mexico-Brazil Economic Integration

Brazil and Mexico recently agreed to formally pursue closer trade ties in the form of a Strategic Economic Integration Agreement. In an e-mail interview, Sean Goforth, a teaching associate in international political economy at Coastal Carolina University and a Latin American blogger for the Foreign Policy Association, discussed Brazil-Mexico economic relations.

WPR: How would you characterize economic relations between Brazil and Mexico?

Sean Goforth: In a word: vacuous. Each nation has liberalized its economy over the past 20 years, in recognition of the benefits of international trade, but they have largely kept their backs turned toward one another. Mexico has looked outside of Latin America, and especially to the United States, to build trade ties. Meanwhile, Brazil's more-gradual liberalization, initiated under the presidency of Fernando Henrique Cardoso (1995-2002), prioritized trade relationships within South America. More recently, President Lula da Silva has fostered closer ties with China, and, to a lesser degree, nations in other parts of the developing world.

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