The debate on the impact of NAFTA on its signatory countries continues. While the United States, Canada and Mexico have experienced economic growth, higher wages and stronger trade since NAFTA, experts disagree on the extent to which the agreement has actually contributed to these benefits, if at all, to manufacturing employment, immigration and consumer goods prices. The results are difficult to isolate and other important developments have occurred on the continent and around the world over the past quarter century. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is a treaty of the United States, Canada and Mexico. it came into force on 1 January 1994. (Since 1989, there has been free trade between the United States and Canada; NAFTA has extended this regime.) On that day, the three countries became the largest free market in the world – the combined economies of the three nations were $6 trillion and directly affected more than 365 million people. NAFTA was created to remove customs barriers for agriculture, manufacturing and services; Eliminating restrictions on investment protection of intellectual property rights. This should be done while respecting environmental and labour concerns (although many observers point to the fact that the three governments have been negligent in environmental and safety at work since the agreement came into force). Small businesses were among those expected to benefit the most from the removal of trade barriers, as this would reduce trade activity in Mexico and Canada and reduce the administrative burden associated with importing or exporting goods. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was inspired by the success of the European Economic Community (1957-1993) in removing tariffs to stimulate trade among its members.
Supporters argued that the creation of a free trade area in North America would bring prosperity through increased trade and production, resulting in the creation of millions of well-paying jobs in all participating countries. The free trade agreement between the Dominican Republic and Central America and the United States of America (CAFTA/DR) was adopted on 1 January 2009 between the United States and Costa Rica, between the United States and Costa Rica, between the United States and the Dominican Republic, on March 1, 2007 between the United States and Guatemala, between the United States and Honduras, on April 1, 2006, and between El Salvador and the United States on March 1, 2006. More than 80% of U.S. exports of consumer goods and industrial products were released from tariffs after implementation and the remaining tariffs were phased out over a 10-year period. Under the U.S. Caribbean Basin Trade Partnership Act, many Central American products have already arrived in the United States duty-free. CAFTA/DR has consolidated these benefits and made them sustainable, so that almost all consumer and industrial products from Central America now arrive in the United States duty-free. Canada and the United States have also agreed on strict rules to ensure fair and transparent management of tariff quotas to ensure that distributors can use them fully. Trade agreements also strengthen the business climate by including commitments to reduce and eliminate tariffs and remove many non-tariff barriers that limit or distort trade flows. Canadian imports from the United States also increased rapidly, both for high-tech products and for a number of labour-intensive industries, such as furniture, clothing, processed food and various household items. As a result, Canada`s dependence on the United States as a source of supply, which had remained at about 69 per cent of imports for several decades, increased until 1996 to 76 per cent. In 2012, Canada was