Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Time for a North American Dollar zone?

I've wondered about NAFTA and the EuroZone for some time now, but I caught a bit of the North American Summit news reports this afternoon, and it got me thinking again. There are parallels, but significant differences as well.

The key difference (at least the most obvious, not to get into the EU parliament connected to the EuroZone), of course, is multiple currencies in the US, Canada, and Mexico. I'd argue that we need to move toward a single super-national North American community (that would include eliminating inernal boarder crossings between the three North American nations and simplify transnational residence), but that's a complex matter. Simpler, and perhaps more mannageable in the short run, is the creation of a single, North American Dollar zone. No, I'm not dissing the Peso, but with two Dollars already, it's the easier way to go. In fact, if we developed a "Dollar/Peso" zone, with total equivalency (essentially printing three currencies without exchange rates, so 1$US = 1$CAD = 1 Peso), we could all keep our familiar currencies in our wallets, but use whatever we happen to have while traveling between the three states. This would have immediate positive impact, especially in boarder communities.

Even better, now's the time. With virtual equivalence between the US and Canadian Dollars, only Mexico would have to reissue the Peso, which could be subsidized by the other two states to facilitate trade.

I know it's not likely, but hey, we could be smarter than we are! Why compete with one another in North America (with only 3 official languages), when we can cooperate to compete with Europe. If the polyglot EU can do it, why can't we?

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