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The North and the South, due to the great economic gap as well as clear economic theory differences, are not the only ones faced with economic controversies as liberal economies are also faced with them as illustrated by the cases of the European Union and NAFTA.
Having a unified Europe is an idea that dates back centuries but it was only after World War II that the idea was discussed extensively albeit only in economic terms. The Treaty of Rome(1957) established the framework for a common market among the six founding nations known as the European Economic Community(EEC). The anticipated enhancement of economic welfare until mid-1960s was achieved quicker than anticipated. The United States championed the idea of a united Europe only to later realize that it would lead to discrimination against its products as well as other products outside the union. The union stagnated until mid-1980s but it expanded as more European nations joined. Specific political actions were required and the most important one was the signing of the Single European Act(1986) which required three thousand specific measures in order to achieve the goal of a single market by December 1992. The Maastricht Treaty of February 1992 clarified that a political union was desired and the EEC came to be known as the European Union(EU). The Maastricht Treaty was met with stiff opposition. The EU comprises of three pillars which are the Economic Union, the Common Foreign and Security Policy and the Justice and Home Affairs Cooperation. Various problems are yet to be fully addressed up to date. Other states have established their own regional trading blocs as a response to the EU's economic power. An example is the North American Free Trade Agreement(NAFTA) among the United States, Canada and Mexico. Rather than aiming for political integration like the EU, NAFTA aim is solely economic integration. Similarly, NAFTA also faces some profound economic controversies.
I do agree with the author's main idea that economic controversies are also found in liberal economies. The author has illustrated this through the cases of the EU and NAFTA. In the case of the EU, various controversies have been exhibited since its formation as EEC up to the current period. These include discrimination of products outside the bloc, especially from the United States, the European public's fear of diminution of national sovereignty, resolution of various ve financial questions arising from the highly subsidized agricultural sector, tensions that develop when members split over foreign policy, the capacity of members to meet union obligations as well as others. NAFTA also encounters various problems such as loss of jobs in the United States, environmental degradation in Mexico and fear of loss of sovereignty and national identity in Canada. Therefore, I am satisfied that the evidence provided convincingly supports the author's argument.
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