This paper considers the current and potential economic achievements of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in light of its costs to the United States. It compares APEC's goals and institutional structure to those of three other multilateral economic institutions: the World Trade Organization, The European Union, and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). It concludes that, although limited both in its aims and effectiveness, APEC does serve a useful--and probably cost-effective--purpose to the United States.
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