The United States has a long history of economic growth, a history that shows free-market capitalism to be the engine of social mobility—a highway to the American Dream.

That’s why the Bush Institute’s 4% Growth Project  sets an ambitious target of real, sustained GDP growth of four percent annually, or about one percentage point higher than the average rate of growth since the end of World War II.  A four percent growth rate will create good jobs for Americans, reduce the burden of government debt, and greatly increase prosperity.

Here’s another compelling fact: The U.S. had $1.2 trillion in trade with Canada and Mexico in 2011, making them this country’s first and third largest trading partners, respectively. What’s more, that volume of trade was equal to our trade with Japan, China, Korea, South Africa, Brazil, Russia and India – combined.

The Bush Institute’s economic growth team also examines policies that will enable these three nations to capitalize upon our potential and make the next ten years the North America Decade. 

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The ramifications of the North American energy revolution, so often simply seen in terms of energy prices, are now reverberating in ways with a strategic impact – an impact which enhances the security of the United States and others who seek political and economic freedoms.

Ron Kirk served as U.S. trade representative from 2009-2013. In that job, the Dallas attorney had a first-hand look at the economic issues facing North America. He had a similar look at the economies of Mexico, Canada and the United States while serving as mayor of Dallas from 1995-2001.

The Bush Institute spoke recently with State Rep. Rafael Anchia about North American energy and trade issues. Anchia, a Dallas Democrat, chairs the Texas House's Committee on International Trade and Intergovernmental Affairs.