Washington, D.C. (April 2, 2012) - We, the Leaders of North
America, met today in Washington, DC to advance the economic well-being,
safety, and security of the United States, Mexico, and Canada. Rooted
in deep economic, historical, cultural, environmental, and societal
ties, North American cooperation enhances our ability to face global
challenges, compete in the international economy, and achieve greater
prosperity. We reaffirm our commitment to further develop our thriving
political and economic partnership with a consistent and strategic
long-term vision, as progress on our common agenda directly benefits the
peoples of our region.
Broad-based, sustainable economic growth and job creation remains our
top priority. For the first time, in 2011 our total trilateral
merchandise trade surpassed USD 1 trillion. Our integration helps
maximize our capabilities and makes our economies more innovative and
competitive globally. Working together, we strive to ensure that North
American economic cooperation fosters gains in productivity for all of
our citizens, enhancing our respective national and bilateral efforts to
achieve that goal.
To that end, we pledge to introduce timely and tangible regulatory
measures to enable innovation and growth while ensuring high standards
of public health, safety, and environmental protection. We will
continue to reduce transaction costs and improve the existing business
environment. We have launched the U.S.-Mexico High-Level Regulatory
Cooperation Council and the U.S.-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council
during the past two years, pursuing a shared objective that we commit to
complement trilaterally in four sectors: certain vehicle emission
standards, railroad safety, the Globally Harmonized System of
Classification and Labeling of Workplace Chemicals, and aligning
principles of our regulatory approaches to nanomaterials. This is
particularly important to small- and medium-sized businesses, which are
the engines of growth. By eliminating unnecessary regulatory
differences, smaller businesses are better equipped to participate in an
integrated North American economy. Success in these efforts opens the
way to additional North American regulatory cooperation.
Continued North American competitiveness requires secure supply
chains and efficient borders. We remain committed to achieving this
through cooperative approaches. To this end, the United States and
Mexico released the Declaration Concerning Twenty-first Century Border
Management in May 2010 and the United States and Canada released the
Beyond the Border Action Plan: A Shared Vision for Perimeter Security
and Economic Competitiveness in December 2011. We are committed to the
mutually-reinforcing goals of these important initiatives and to their
full implementation. By also supporting the work of multilateral
organizations to foster improved collaboration, integration, and
standards, we better identify and interdict threats before they reach
our borders, as well as expedite the legitimate movement of goods and
people throughout North America in a more efficient, secure, and
resilient manner. We also have instructed our trade and commerce
ministers to identify sectors where we can deepen our regional
cooperation through increased trade and investment.
As leading sources of innovation and creativity, our three countries
are committed to the protection and enforcement of intellectual property
rights (IPR). We commit to promote sound enforcement practices and an
effective legal framework for IPR enforcement in the areas of criminal
enforcement, enforcement at the border, civil and administrative
actions, and distribution of IPR infringing material on the Internet
consistent with the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), which
the United States and Canada have recently signed. Mexico will continue
to work on a comprehensive reform to its legal system to achieve the
high standards pursued under ACTA.
Energy cooperation reduces the cost of doing business and enhances
economic competitiveness in North America. We recognize the growing
regional and federal cooperation in the area of continental energy,
including electricity generation and interconnection and welcome
increasing North American energy trade. We commit our governments to
work with all stakeholders to deepen such cooperation to enhance our
collective energy security, including the safe and efficient exploration
and exploitation of resources. We support coordinated efforts to
facilitate seamless energy flows on the interconnected grid and to
promote trade and investment in clean energy technologies.
Enhanced electricity interconnection in the Americas would advance
the goals of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas to
reduce energy poverty and increase the use of renewable sources of
energy. We recognize Mexico’s leadership in supporting
inter-connections in Central America and reaffirm our support to bring
affordable, reliable, and increasingly renewable power to businesses and
homes in Central America and the Caribbean while opening wider markets
for clean energy and green technology.
We pledge to continue our efforts to advance a lasting global
solution to the challenge of climate change. We are pleased with the
outcome of the climate conference in Durban, with respect to both
operationalizing the Cancun agreements and laying the groundwork for a
new legal agreement applicable to all Parties from 2020, support the
activation of the Green Climate Fund, and underline the importance of
climate finance and investment in the context of meaningful mitigation.
We plan to work together, including through the Major Economies Forum
on Energy and Climate, to secure a successful outcome at the 18th U.N.
Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties in
Doha, Qatar. We continue to advance the transition to a clean energy
economy and cooperate to reduce global rates of deforestation and land
degradation. We also intend to deepen our trilateral cooperation and
work with other interested partners to accelerate efforts aimed at
reducing emissions of “short-lived climate pollutants,” noting the
recently launched Climate and Clean Air Coalition to Reduce Short-lived
Climate Pollutants in which we are all actively engaged. Reducing our
emissions of these substances, which include methane, black carbon, and
many hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), offers significant opportunities to
reduce the rate of global warming in the near term, in the context of
our broader efforts to address climate change, while also yielding many
health, agricultural productivity, and energy security benefits.
As our societies and economies become more reliant on networked
technology, we recognize the growing importance of an open,
interoperable, secure, and reliable Internet. We reaffirm the
importance of multi-stakeholder governance bodies for the Internet and
underscore that fighting cybercrime is essential to promoting economic
growth and international security. We recognize the seminal
contribution of the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime, and believe the
Convention should be adopted as widely as possible. To that end, we
look forward to Canada’s ratification and Mexico’s completion of the
necessary preparations for its signature of the Convention.
At the 2009 North American Leaders’ Summit, we committed to build
upon our successful coordinated response to the H1N1 pandemic, which
stands as a global example of cooperation, to jointly prepare for future
animal and pandemic influenza to enhance the health and safety of our
citizens. Today we announce the culmination of that effort—the North
American Plan for Animal and Pandemic Influenza (NAPAPI)—which provides a
collaborative and multi-sectoral framework to strengthen our response
to future animal and pandemic influenza events in North America and
commit to its implementation.
All of our citizens are adversely affected by transnational organized
crime. We commit to direct our national efforts and deepen our
cooperation against all facets of this common challenge based on the
principles of shared responsibility, mutual trust, and respect. We
intend to further share expertise and information and to cooperate in
key areas such as countering arms trafficking and money laundering
consistent with our laws and constitutions.
We are committed to strengthening security in the Americas through
capacity building support. We intend to enhance our cooperation with
our partners in Central America. In 2012, our governments will launch a
consolidated Central America Integration System (SICA)-North America
Security Dialogue to deepen regional security coordination and
cooperation. We will remain actively engaged in the ongoing SICA-Group
of Friends of Central America collaborative process, to align
international assistance and programs supporting the implementation of
the Central American Regional Security Strategy. We also welcome the
recent High Level Hemispheric Meeting on Transnational Organized Crime,
and recognize the relevance of closer collaboration and information
sharing among all relevant national agencies.
We reiterate our commitment to Haiti and call upon Haitian political
actors to work together and take concrete steps toward strengthening
governance and the rule of law, which are fundamental to increased
trade, investment, and long-term development and prosperity. We note
the urgency and importance of parliamentary confirmation of a new
government, and for that government to confirm the timeline for Senate
and local elections. We also encourage Haiti to continue to pursue the
development of the Haitian National Police so it can take full
responsibility for Haiti’s security.
To further strengthen nuclear security on the North American
continent, we worked together, along with the International Atomic
Energy Agency, to convert the fuel in Mexico’s research reactor to low
enriched uranium and provide new low enriched uranium fuel in exchange
for the highly enriched uranium fuel, as pledged during the Washington
Nuclear Security Summit in 2010 and announced at the Seoul Nuclear
Security Summit in March 2012.
Our strengthened dialogue on priority issues in the North American
agenda is reflected in the frequent formal and informal ministerial and
technical meetings across a wide range of issues among our three
countries, including the work of the NAFTA Free Trade Commission and the
North American Commissions for Environmental Cooperation and for Labor
Cooperation to continue to enhance our region’s prosperity, protect the
environment, and improve working conditions in North America. Taking
into account our common security and defense challenges, such as
transnational criminal organizations, as well as opportunities to
strengthen cooperation in the field of disaster relief, we welcome the
recent expansion of our ministerial-level dialogue through the North
American Defense Ministers Meeting held March 26-27, 2012 in Ottawa.
As partners in the Americas, we are committed to work together within
the Inter-American System and in the framework of the VI Summit of the
Americas, to be held April 14-15 in Cartagena, Colombia. We fully
support the Summit’s theme of “Connecting the Americas: Partners for
Prosperity.” The Summit provides an opportunity to leverage the ties
that connect the Americas to advance democratic, transparent,
accountable governance that promotes inclusive, sustainable,
market-based economic growth in the decade ahead. Deepening our shared
interests and values will benefit the people of the Americas and bolster
positive global engagement by countries from across the region. We
pledge to work together to ensure the Summit strengthens a shared
commitment to work in equal partnership toward these goals.
In light of the importance of the Americas to our collective economic
wellbeing, we are committed to working together to advance the
principles approved by the Inter-American Competitiveness Network in
Santo Domingo and to support the Pathways to Prosperity initiative which
underscores the importance of empowering small businesses; facilitating
trade; building a modern work force; and developing stronger labor and
environmental practices to encourage inclusive economic growth.
We also recognize the value of our common understandings on the major
challenges faced by the world today, and acknowledge the importance of
promoting growth and of preserving and deepening trade as keys to the
global economic recovery. Canada and the United States support the
efforts of the Mexican Presidency of the G-20 this year, and, together
with Mexico, we commit ourselves to deepening our shared dialogue on
economic governance therein, especially as we work to enhance North
American competitiveness and prosperity. The Trans-Pacific Partnership
(TPP) provides an opportunity to further deepen our trade relationship
and create jobs. The United States welcomes Canada’s and Mexico’s
interest in joining the TPP as ambitious partners.
President Obama and Prime Minister Harper welcome President
Calderon’s offer for Mexico to host the next North American Leaders’
Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada at the North American Leaders' Summit in Washington, D.C.
April 2, 2012
Prime Minister Stephen Harper made the following remarks at the North American Leaders’ Summit in Washington, D.C.:
“First of all I would like to begin by thanking you, Barack, for so graciously and so warmly, literally, hosting us here today, and I’d also like to offer my sincere condolences to you, Felipe, and through you to the people of Mexico on the passing of former President Miguel de la Madrid who I gather had much to do with the NAFTA partnership that we enjoy today.
“Canada places the highest value on the friendship and partnership among our three countries.
“We form one of the world’s largest free-trade zones, which has been of great benefit to all of our nations.
“We are also effective collaborators in the G-20, in responding to the challenges of the global recession and instability during these past few years.
“As affirmed in our Budget last week, our government is focused on creating jobs, growth and long-term prosperity for all Canadians.
“Today's Summit was a wonderful opportunity to discuss how we need to work together, as North American partners, to ensure prosperity for the citizens of our three great countries.
“I am especially pleased that the United States has welcomed Canada’s and Mexico’s interest in joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
“We also had useful discussions on continued cooperation in managing our borders, streamlining regulations, securing global supply chains and advancing clean energy.
“In addition, we’ve announced a broadened plan for North American pandemic preparedness, and a new North America-Central America dialogue on security, to fight transnational organized crime.
“Finally, we discussed the agenda for the upcoming Summit of the Americas in Colombia.
“Canada looks forward to continue to working with the United States and Mexico to promote democratic principles, regional stability and market-based economic growth with our partners in the Western Hemisphere.
“And once again, Barack and Felipe, I look forward to continuing our useful discussions in Cartagena.”