Free trade (as it’s mistakenly called) is a leading cause of immigration, as I found in NAFTA: The Cause of Immigration. So it was very saddening to me to see the news that Costa Ricans voted to pass DR-CAFTA.
Costa Rica is the last Central American country to ratify this treaty, and the fact that it passed with a similar margin (51.5%) to when it passed in the U.S. House of Representatives (2 votes) is proof that not all is lost.
The Washington Post article misses out an a key part in this vote that most other media covered- the White House’s strong-arming tactics to scare the Costa Ricans into voting for the measure.
“Washington last week urged Costa Ricans to recognize the treaty’s
benefits and vowed not to renegotiate the terms of the deal if voters
rejected it. U.S. officials also suggested they might not renew other
trade preferences now afforded Costa Rican products, set to expire next
September, if the pact is not approved.”
–Costa Rica to Join Free Trade Agreement, AP
This is neoliberalism at its best- depriving countries of the possibility to self-govern, especially in the case of economics.
As far as I know, this is the only country where the citizens actually were able to decide to pass DR-CAFTA or not. (Democracy)
?In the Dominican Republic, it was written by the Zona Francas (maquillas), and then presented to Congress to pass. (not Democracy)