The North American Competitiveness Council (NACC)—a trilateral council of business leaders representing the private sectors of Canada, Mexico, and the United States—offered a report to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, President Felipe Calderón, and President George W. Bush on April 22 in New Orleans, Louisiana during the North American Leaders Summit. The NACC’s 2008 report (PDF), titled Meeting the Global Challenge, says that government and business leaders must work harder to ensure broad public understanding of the significant benefits that flow from liberalized trade and investment within North America. NACC members, the report adds, are “deeply concerned” about recent isolationist rhetoric and its potential impact on efforts to strengthen the competitiveness of the three countries.
The report says that improved border management is a critical priority for businesses in the three countries and examines progress made in areas including: facilitated entry for cargo, supply-chain development, the automotive industry, intellectual property rights, the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, safe food and products, sustainable energy, emergency management, and financial services.
The NACC is a group of business leaders from the United States, Canada, and Mexico that was created in 2006 to gather advice from the private sector on ways to enhance North America’s competitive position, promote increased employment and foster a higher standard of living. In the United States, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Council of the Americas jointly serve as the secretariat to the NACC. The Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE) serves as the secretariat in Canada and the Instituto Mexicano para la Competitividad (IMCO) serves as the secretariat in Mexico.