Fair trade agreements, such as the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) among Mexico, Canada, and the United States, facilitate the movement of products and investments across national borders. These agreements typically work to advantage multi-national corporations over workers in the global North and South and the environment.
NAFTA was one of our first “free” trade agreements and its provisions form the template for subsequent agreements. The stated purpose of the treaty was to increase trade and investment between the three countries with the goal of boosting economic development in Mexico, while also providing new markets for the United States and Canada. In reality, Mexican agriculture (which provided a livelihood for millions of Mexicans) has been decimated, wages have stagnated in Mexico and income inequality in the United States has continued to climb, and corporations have been the primary beneficiaries.
UCC General Synod Resolutions and Pronouncements
Calling the United Church of Christ to declare itself a "fair trade" denomination (General Synod 26, 2007)