The value of making commitments externally: Evidence from WTO accessions

Man-Keung Tang, Shang-Jin Wei, 22 January 2009

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Pro-growth reforms can be “locked in” through legally binding external commitments in WTO accessions, free trade agreements, or IMF and World Bank loans. Once embedded in an international treaty, a reform programme carries higher costs of reversal, which makes it less likely to be undone unilaterally, and hence becomes more appealing to investors.

Topics: Development
Tags: growth, WTO

Seeping in slowly: The WTO and human rights

Susan Ariel Aaronson, 20 January 2009

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The world’s most misunderstood international organisation sits in a grand palace on the shores of Lake Geneva. The building’s grandeur stands in stark contrast to the organisation’s popularity. This organisation, once a club called the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), was created by the post World War II planners in 1947-1948.

Topics: Institutions and economics, International trade
Tags: Human rights, WTO

The Doha endgame and the future of the WTO

Claude Barfield, 19 January 2009

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On December 12, the WTO’s Doha negotiations collapsed. More accurately, trade negotiators from the member states finally acknowledged what had been evident for months –the substantive divisions on central issues were too deep and the political will too puny to bridge the gaps. In recent weeks, there have been frantic calls for quick action to restart the negotiating process.

Topics: Global governance, International trade
Tags: Doha Round, WTO

Multilateral free trade: The Obama letdown

Jagdish Bhagwati, 9 January 2009

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In the Financial Times, (“Obama’s Free-Trade Credentials Top Clinton’s”, 3 March 2008), I had argued that, unlike with Hillary Clinton, there were several reasons why one could be optimistic that Obama would follow a pro-trade policy despite “prudential” protectio

Topics: International trade
Tags: free trade, Obama, protectionism, WTO

The economic crisis, Doha completion, and protectionist pressure

Joseph Francois, 17 December 2008

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With a deepening economic crisis and rising calls for public assistance in sectors ranging from finance to autos, there are also signs of growing nervousness about the dangers of protectionism. These include editorials in the financial press and high profile think tank studies on the stumbling Doha Round (Wolf 2008, Bouet and LaBorde 2008, Baldwin and Evenett 2008).

Topics: International trade
Tags: Doha Round, protectionism, WTO

Restoring the G20's credibility on trade: Plan B and the WTO trade talks

Richard Baldwin, Simon J Evenett, 13 December 2008

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Reputations rise and fall faster than ever. It took 25 years for the G7 to demonstrate its annual meetings were little more than a vacuous photo-op. It has taken just 25 days for the G20’s commitments to be proven hollow.

Topics: International trade
Tags: G20 Summit, global crisis, WTO

What world leaders should do to halt the spread of protectionism

Simon J Evenett interviewed by Romesh Vaitilingam, 12 Dec 2008

Simon Evenett of the University of St Gallen talks to Romesh Vaitilingam about the latest e-book in Vox’s ‘What leaders should do in the crisis’ series, focusing particularly on the prospects for completing the Doha Round of world trade negotiations in the light of the economic crisis. The interview was recorded on Tuesday 9 December 2008.

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Topics: International trade
Tags: Doha Round, protectionism, WTO

The crisis and protectionism: Steps world leaders should take

Richard Baldwin, Simon J Evenett, 4 December 2008

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When incomes, investment and jobs are under threat, national governments try to cushion the blow – in part by erecting new trade barriers. This time is no exception. According to the latest data from the WTO and ITC, the number of antidumping cases jumped 40% in the first half of 2008 and many nations have already raised tariffs in 2008.

Topics: International trade
Tags: beggar-thy-neighbour policies, Doha Round, tariff war, WTO, WTO-legal tariff war.

South African objectives at the G20 leaders summit

Peter Draper, 14 November 2008

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To the apparent surprise of G20 finance ministers and central bank governors meeting in Washington last month, George W. Bush, the outgoing US President, proposed that a formal summit of G20 heads of state convene in Washington on November 15th.

Topics: Global governance
Tags: financial crisis, G20, IMF, South Africa, WTO

Border measures in US climate policy options

Jisun Kim, Gary Clyde Hufbauer, 17 October 2008

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Due to rising domestic and international pressures, several greenhouse gas (GHG) control bills have been introduced in the 110th Congress. Some states and regional groups have already enacted controls.

Topics: Energy, International trade
Tags: climate change, emissions, WTO

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