In this study, the question of whether integration is the answer to economic development in the Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region is explored. Regional economic integration is not a new phenomenon and can be traced at least as far back as World War II. The specific problem is, while the LAC region has seen a decline in tariffs from 40% in the 1980s to about 10% in 2008, the share of intra-regional trade has declined or remained the same since 2000. In addition, the region has seen exports drop from 11.3% in 1948 to 3.7% in 2007, whereas Asia saw an increase from 14% to 28% during the same period. This study focused on collecting and comparing secondary data related to regional economic integration in the LAC region. Three questions addressed within this study include (a) why integration has declined or ceased in the LAC region, (b) what efforts are warranted for government leaders to embrace transformational leadership in devising programs and policies that foster integration in the region, and (c) how important is regional integration in the globalized economic world. Necessary to moving forward is collective leadership from the countries that also lead in governance effectiveness and political stability. The findings show, although efforts continue to restart the process, some charges of protectionism, and lack of readiness, are valid. On the other hand, many good arguments exist for greater integration in the LAC region. Integration has played a role in the defense of democratic principles, especially when threatened by de facto regimes or periods of political instability. Continued research on integration as an economic approach and solution for LAC is imperative. A better understanding of benefits and challenges related to hemispheric or regional integration is a reason to continue research on this topic.
|Advisor:||Dickson, Ryan A.|
|Commitee:||Dickson, Ryan A., Hebert, Suzanne, Pogue, Laura|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Business administration, Economic theory|
|Keywords:||Caribbean, Economic integration, Latin America, Regional economic integration, Trade|
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