Despite the return of economic growth, the threat of protectionism still lingers. This column presents the fifth report from the Global Trade Alert with a focus on sub-Saharan Africa. The report is the busiest yet – the number of identified protectionist measures has risen by 40%. No four-digit product line, no economic sector, and no jurisdiction have emerged unscathed by crisis-era protectionism.
Simon J Evenett, 28 May 2010
Christoph Böhringer, Andreas Lange, Thomas F. Rutherford, 06 May 2010
Will unilateral emissions cap-and-trade schemes result in carbon leakage and provide a cover for protectionist policies? This column argues that these risks are overstated. Moreover, large open economies such as the EU or the US cannot substantially reduce pollution costs through competing on emission-prices and a simple rule of uniform pricing is close to optimal.
Kati Suominen, 16 April 2010
Should the US take action over China’s exchange-rate policy? This column argues “yes”. But while China would be momentarily hurt by the imposition of tariffs, US companies, workers, and consumers would suffer in the long run. The US should instead follow Fred Bergsten’s three-stage plan of engaging the IMF and WTO. The column also suggests that a long-run solution should be worked out within the G20.
Philip Levy, 16 April 2010
Many US analysts argue that China’s currency is undervalued and that its policy significantly impedes global macroeconomic rebalancing. This column outlines the possible policy responses available to the US. While multilateral policies are slower, they are less likely than unilateral policies to trigger a negative political response. But first the US needs to establish a principled basis for action.
Kym Anderson, John Cockburn, Will Martin, 28 April 2010
Many economists argue that removing trade barriers such as the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy will be globally welfare-improving. This column presents findings from simulations that estimate the welfare effects depending on the extent of trade reform and possible policy responses. It suggests that removing the world’s price and trade distortions would reduce the number of poor people worldwide by 3%.
Fred Bergsten, 16 April 2010
C Fred Bergsten is one of several commentators calling for action against China’s exchange-rate policy. In this column, he outlines a three-part multilateral action plan to force China to allow the renminbi to appreciate: label China a “currency manipulator”, seek a special IMF consultation, and request a WTO dispute settlement panel.
Hylke Vandenbussche, Maurizio Zanardi, 08 March 2010
The global crisis has raised fears that governments would engage in a protectionist spiral. This column argues that, while countries have by and large kept their promises not to raise barriers to trade, antidumping has crept up. Far from being a “small price to pay”, the new tough users of antidumping laws such as Brazil, India, Mexico, Taiwan, and Turkey have 5.9% fewer annual imports as a result.
Gary Clyde Hufbauer, Jeffrey J. Schott , Woan Foong Wong, 22 February 2010
Fears of protectionism have risen in the wake of the global financial crisis. This column argues that, far from being time to abandon the Doha Round, sustaining political support for the rules-based multilateral trade system is more important than ever. If this column’s recommendations are followed, world GDP could gain up to $282.7 billion a year.
Simon J Evenett, 18 February 2010
The latest GTA report examines whether macroeconomic stabilisation has altered governments' resort to protectionism, with a focus on the Gulf Region.
Simon J Evenett, 18 February 2010
The threat of tit-for-tat protectionism is not over yet. This column presents the latest report from the Global Trade Alert and suggests the recent recovery has not slowed the protectionism wave. In the last quarter of 2009, almost every major trading nation has implemented discrimination against foreign commercial interests above trend levels.
Chad P. Bown, 18 February 2010
Protectionism has been a growing concern during the global crisis. This column examines the fourth-quarter data from the Global Antidumping Database. For the first time since the onset of the crisis, the world witnessed a substantial decrease in industry demands for temporary new import barriers through trade remedies. But this period also saw a substantial increase in new trade barriers imposed, as the trade-remedy investigations initiated earlier in the crisis concluded with new protection.
Lucian Cernat, Nuno Sousa, 09 January 2010
What is the impact of crisis-led protectionism on trade? This column provides a new way to interpret protectionism – the “Russian doll” effect – and shows that the effect on EU exports has been more severe than the rest of the world.
Pravin Krishna, Mine Zeynap Senses, 19 December 2009
Public concerns regarding globalisation remain as economists still do not agree on trade’s effect on the labour market. This column focuses on the effect of increased trade on permanent income shocks experienced by workers in the US. It suggests that increased import penetration is associated with increased risk to worker incomes.
Simon J Evenett, 14 December 2009
The third report of Global Trade Alert contains the latest assessment of protectionist dynamics at work in the world economy with a focus on the Asia-Pacific region.
Simon J Evenett, 14 December 2009
The latest Report from Global Trade Alert focuses on the Asia-Pacific region.
Simon J Evenett, 27 November 2009
Drawing upon the latest data on protectionism from the Global Trade Alert database, this chapter reports the extent to which governments have altered the discrimination against foreign commercial interests during the sharp global downturn and nascent recovery of the past twelve months. Tariff increases have been relatively rare – contemporary discriminatory policies come in murkier forms, such as financial bailouts.
Jeffry A. Frieden, 27 November 2009
Re-balancing global trade will be difficult, generating substantial protectionist pressures. To manage these pressures, governments must maintain domestic political support for an open world economy. This in turn requires flexible responses to national political pressures. Rigid, unrealistic insistence on exemplary behaviour will be less fruitful than efforts at modest, feasible cooperation on trade policies. Above all, governments singly and jointly need to address the underlying macroeconomic causes of the imbalances to prevent serious trade confrontations.
Jean-Pierre Chauffour, 03 October 2009
World leaders have violated their repeated pledges to resist protectionist pressures. This column says that fighting protectionism is both an economic imperative and a moral responsibility to make sure that the darkest hours of the 20th century do not repeat themselves.
Simon J Evenett, 24 September 2009
Simon Evenett of the University of St Gallen talks to Romesh Vaitilingam about ‘Broken Promises’, the latest report from Global Trade Alert, which collates information on state measures taken since last November that discriminate against foreign commercial interests, and reveals how the G20 countries have broken their 'no protectionism' pledge. The interview was recorded in Geneva at the inaugural Thinking Ahead on International Trade conference in September 2009.
Simon J Evenett, 22 September 2009
Economists have been particularly wary of protectionism since the recession’s onset. This column presents new evidence that numerous governments, including G20 nations, have implemented protectionist measures. It calls for G20 members to halt further trade-distorting measures and review those identified by major monitoring initiatives.