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Joshua Keating on the Honduran RED

+ Brandon Fuller

On Foreign Policy’s Passport blog Joshua Keating has a nice post on the potential for Canadian involvement in a new reform zone in Honduras, known locally as la Región Especial de Desarrollo (RED). He closes the post by noting that:

The notion of Honduran citizens accepting the jurisdiction of a Canadian court, or a Mauritian one for that matter, still feels a bit far-fetched. But as Alex Tabarrok points out, Romer has already taken this idea a lot farther than anyone expected.

A couple of points in response:

  • It’s the Honduran government that has taken this idea farther than anyone expected. Romer advises the government, but Hondurans are in the driver’s seat – they took elements of the charter cities idea and devised their own actionable policy – a policy that received strong majority support in the Congress across all political parties.
  • The Honduran interest in institutional support from Canada and Mauritius may seem far-fetched, but it’s important to remember that such cooperation would only apply in the RED and that people would have a choice about whether to move in. It’s not as though Mauritius, Canada, or any other country would come in unsolicited and impose new rules on the residents of an existing city in Honduras.
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