Multilateralising 21st-century regionalism

Richard Baldwin 20 January 2014

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Trade and trade agreements used to be relatively simple. Trade primarily meant trade in ‘made-here-sold-there’ goods, so 20th-century regional and multilateral trade agreements dealt primarily with barriers to goods crossing borders – especially tariffs. For governments, the key purpose of trade and trade agreements was to help their firms sell things.

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Topics:  Global governance International trade

Tags:  WTO, trade, regional trade agreements, supply chains, harmonisation, global value chain, megaregionals, network effects

The ICT revolution and the international organisation of the firm

Sergi Basco, Martí Mestieri 05 October 2013

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The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) revolution has changed how goods and services are produced. ICT has rendered some jobs obsolete while spurring the creation of new ones (Autor et al. 2003). Moreover, they have transformed the organisation of production itself. The ICT revolution has enabled a finer degree of specialisation in the production process, allowing it to be more fragmented than in the past, a phenomenon coined by Baldwin (2006) as the “Second Great Unbundling”.

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Topics:  Global economy Industrial organisation International trade

Tags:  global value chain

Firms and credit constraints along the global value chain: Processing trade in China

Kalina Manova, Zhihong Yu 13 May 2013

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The past 20 years of globalisation have witnessed a dramatic expansion in the fragmentation of production across countries. Firms today can not only trade in final goods, but also conduct intermediate stages of manufacturing by importing foreign inputs, processing and assembling them into finished products, and re-exporting these to consumers and distributors abroad. While processing trade contributes just 10% of EU exports, at over 50% it has been a major driving force behind the rapid growth of Chinese exports (Cernat and Pajot 2012).

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  China, global supply chain, global value chain

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