North America’s Future with NAFTA and Blockchain

The NAFTA Need

The North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is a hot economic topic right now. Introduced in 1994, the agreement between Canada, Mexico, and the United States arrived on the scene after a very turbulent debate. With then-U.S President Bill Clinton even going so far as to say he’d support rival Republican party members at the next election if they voted in support of the deal.

Today NAFTA is hugely profitable, earning $1.1 trillion in 2016 alone. But with the election of Donald Trump has come the demand for renegotiation and a new deal. One that would better reflect the modern goals of the member nations in the global economy. So what might a new NAFTA deal mean for crypto and blockchain?

U.S President Donald Trump’s greatest supporters would acknowledge his style is nothing if not robust, but it’s also true a fair case can be made for this ethos on trade. Whether a U.S Republican voter, a Democrat voter, an Independent, or observer from a distance, all can see in NAFTA issues surrounding diminishment of U.S jobs, wage stagnation (if not suppression) and more.

Like the Brexit phenomenon in the UK, Trump’s critics may fairly observe his ‘bull in a china shop’ approach to international relations is not always entirely productive, but compared to what was promised in 1994, the benefits of NAFTA did not necessarily bear fruit for Middle America.

In turn, beyond Trump, a new discussion surrounding global trade in the 2010’s was overdue. Especially given the rapid rise of borderless economic titans like Amazon, Facebook, and Google. Whether someone is the biggest fan or greatest critic of such groups, undoubtedly the explosive growth of the digital economy and world of eCommerce today far outpaced the ability of any to foresee the future of NAFTA in 1994, when the internet was in its infancy.

NAFTA
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Image credit: Keepscases/Wikimedia Commons

NAFTA Today, Blockchain Tomorrow

While any trade deal that delivers a trillion dollars of profitability is clearly finding some success, it’s also true the current NAFTA is ultimately a free trade deal from a bygone era. This doesn’t mean the agreement cannot still function, but if the power of the internet was scarcely understood two decades ago in 1994, the possibilities blockchain offer require a new conversation altogether.

Better still, while leaders of the North American nations may squabble over tariffs and taxes, the integration of blockchain into a new NAFTA could deliver greater efficiency, productivity – and ultimately greater profitability, without demanding one nation lose out over another.

It’s unlikely a comprehensive North American blockchain network would be and up running before the possible new NAFTA deal is ratified, but blockchain’s capacity to provide revolutionary reform means the ‘blockchain conversation’ between trading partners like the U.S, Canada, and Mexico will need to be had in future.

A New Free Trade

Ultimately a new NAFTA and the future of crypto and blockchain are heading in the same direction. A recognition our world is becoming more economically borderless, but there remains a need to work within the structure of local laws from one country to another, and for the benefit of each country individually.

It’s not yet totally clear to what extent NAFTA and this emerging tech will travel the same road, or merely share parallel tracks. What is clear is the potential of crypto and blockchain to drive a new era of international trade.

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Ed Kennedy
Ed Kennedy is a journalist at BlockTelegraph News and a web developer from Melbourne, Australia. A keen technologist with an enduring interest in the rise of a truly digital global economy, Ed is passionate about the transformative potential blockchain offers our world.

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