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Film Clips, Chapter 13

International Political Economy

Free Trade Agreement: Let the Talks Begin!

In 1985, then–Prime Minister Brian Mulroney announced to parliament that talks had started with the United States for a free trade agreement. It quickly became one of the most controversial foreign policy initiatives in Canadian history. Those for and against the agreement argued for years before it was finally put into action in 1989. Immediately, further talks initiated towards including Mexico into the larger NAFTA agreement. This radio broadcast describes the issues at the beginning, when Mulroney made his first statement.

The BRICs Dream

It is estimated that Brazil, Russia, India, and China will become the most significant economies in the next 50 years. In this video, Goldman Sachs analyst Jim O’Neill (who coined the phrase “BRIC”) discusses why these four countries will have such an effect on the global economy in the years ahead.

Garment Industry Favouring Foreign Contracts

What effects do the maquiladora manufacturing plants in Mexico have on similar industries in countries like Canada? In this clip from 1989, the owner of Bovie Manufacturing in Montreal says that the movement of contracts from Canada to Mexico is a short-term thing, and once wages in Mexico rise, jobs will return to Canada. Those garment industry jobs never did return, and subsequent changes to international trade laws saw what was left of the once-strong clothing manufacturing sector in Montreal practically disappear.

Is Your Car as “All-American” as You Think?

Probably not. In this video by New England Cable News, the origin of cars is considered. What used to be “foreign” is now domestic, and the other way around. The reason, of course, is the globalization of manufacturing, which this chapter describes. It has changed the nature of commerce and production in every country; automobiles are just one example.