chapter  22
14 Pages

A Middle Eastern Free Trade Agreement (MEFTA): Prospects and Possibilities

In international trade, multilaterism is out and regionalism is in. The building of regional economic blocs can be observed in the global economy. All the major economic powers are involved. The EC has embarked on "Europe Beyond 1992"-an initiative intended to create the world's largest single market: A market of 342 million consumers with a GNP of $6 trillion. The United States, Canada, and Mexico have also launched the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Furthermore, the United States' Enterprise for the Americas Initiative (EAI) intends to ultimately create a hemispheric free trade area. Not to be left out, in March, 1991, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay formed the Southern Common Market (MERCOUSUR). If and when it comes to pass, the Asian countries, Japan and Korea among others with the addition of coastal China, would create a $4 trillion GNP that could rival North America or Europe in both GNP and population by the year 2000.