Declaring economic growth and job
creation their top priority, President Obama and leaders
of Canada and Mexico pledged Monday to advance economic partnership
among the three countries.
After a one-day summit with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Mexican President Felipe Calderon, Obama announced at a White House news conference that the three nations are launching a new effort to get rid of outdated regulations that stifle job creation.
Obama noted that trade in goods among three countries surpassed 1 trillion U.S. dollars for the first time last year, which supported some 2.5 million American jobs. "I want more trade supporting even more jobs in the future," Obama said.
"Our governments recognize that it is absolutely necessary to continue to fully comply with the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), as well as to explore new means of strengthening regional competitiveness," Calderon said at the news conference.
Harper said Canada places the highest value on the friendship and partnership with the United State and Mexico.
In a joint statement released after the meeting, leaders of the three countries vowed to shore up efforts to strengthen North American economic relations.
"Our integration helps maximize our capabilities and make our economies more innovative and competitive globally," the statement said.
The leaders pledged to continue to reduce transaction costs and improve the existing business environment, and eliminate unnecessary regulatory differences to give smaller businesses more chances to participate in an integrated North American economy.
They would also make coordinated efforts to enhance collective energy security, facilitate seamless energy flows on the interconnected grid and promote trade and investment in clean energy technologies, noted the statement.
Moreover, the United States welcomed Canada and Mexico's interest in joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which they said would provide an opportunity to further deepen the trade relationship and create jobs.
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