Sustaining trade reform: Institutional lessons from Peru and Argentina

Elías A. Baracat, J. Michael Finger, Julio J. Nogués, Raúl León Thorne 28 October 2013

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Beyond removing restrictions, trade reform in Latin American in the 1980s and 1990s was also an attempt to reform the culture of policy management, and in some countries to introduce an optimistic, ‘Asian’ perspective into trade politics. In Peru, reforms have been sustained over several changes of president. In contrast, Argentina has introduced multiple restrictions and has reverted to the ‘off-the-books’ forms of policymaking that the adoption of GATT/WTO standards by previous the leadership tried to eliminate.

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Topics:  Institutions and economics International trade

Tags:  WTO, trade liberalisation, Latin America, reform, Argentina, Peru

Awakening the WTO

Hector R. Torres 21 September 2013

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Admitting that 'the present is just a snapshot in a journey' is disconcerting, so we feel better assuming that the current state of affairs will turn out to be permanent. Indulging in this mistake is common, and we also see it happening in multilateral institutions – particularly if they do not have a watchdog to keep them free from self-deception. The WTO does not have such a watchdog, and this may explain its resistance to acknowledging the obvious.

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Topics:  Institutions and economics International trade

Tags:  WTO, Doha Round, developing countries, international trade

An unintended consequence of WTO membership

Beata Javorcik, Gaia Narciso 05 September 2013

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The WTO with its 158 member countries is one of the most prominent international bodies. Becoming a member of the club often involves extensive and sometime politically difficult policy changes. For instance, the median time gap between the application and the accession reached 71 months for countries that joined after 1995 (Tang and Wei 2011).

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  WTO, tariff evasion, smuggling

Global value chain governance in the era of mega FTAs and a proposal of an international supply-chain agreement

Michitaka Nakatomi 15 August 2013

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As the Doha Round of trade negotiations under the WTO continues to stagnate, mega FTAs – such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the economic partnership agreement between Japan and the EU, and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership between the US and the EU – will likely play the leading role in trade rulemaking for some time to come. At the same time, however, mega FTAs are meant to set rules for and enhance value chains within specific geographic regions, and they will not directly lead to the creation of global trade rules.

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  WTO, FTAs, global value chains

Looking back, moving forward

Pascal Lamy 29 July 2013

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I came before the General Council in 2005 when I was a DG candidate and again in 2009 to share with you my views about the WTO. Today, I come to you one last time in my capacity as Director-General, as a sign of my strong commitment to being accountable to you, the members of this organisation, whom I have strived to serve since you appointed me eight years ago.

Thank you for affording me this opportunity.

Let me begin by saying that it has been an immense honour and privilege to serve this organisation.

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  WTO, Doha Round, Pascal Lamy

Payoff from the world trade agenda 2013

Gary Clyde Hufbauer, Jeffrey J. Schott , Cathleen Cimino 07 July 2013

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In the wake of the Great Recession, world trade and investment have faltered. Responsible officials turned a blind eye to fresh liberalisation, and instead condoned a quiet resurgence of protectionist measures.

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  WTO, Doha Round, Bali Meeting

Future of the world trading system: Asian perspectives

Richard Baldwin, Masahiro Kawai, Ganeshan Wignaraja 12 June 2013

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The 1995 creation of the WTO – as an institutional extension of the GATT - held out the promise of an effective, rules-based world trading system where all countries were treated alike. In addition to establishing a global judiciary for trade disputes, the WTO was expected to provide a forum for trade negotiations and other related functions. Progress on the judiciary side has been brilliant, but the negotiation promise has yet to be fulfilled (Messerlin 2012).

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Topics:  Global governance International trade

Tags:  WTO, free-trade agreements, Factory Asia

Some news about preferential international market access

Peter Egger, Georg Wamser 07 June 2013

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The world trade system as governed by the WTO works on two fundamental principles, i.e. most-favoured nation treatment and national treatment.

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  trade policy, WTO, free-trade agreements

The stalemate at the negotiations on environmental goods: Can it be broken?

Gaëlle Balineau, Jaime de Melo 05 May 2013

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At its launch, the Doha Round was dubbed the Round for the ‘Developing Countries and for the protection of the environment’ as it was to create a triple-win situation, for trade, for development, and for the environment by the reduction or elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers on environmental goods and services. So far, as the ministerial conference is approaching, the only progress has been from Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) members at a meeting last September where they agreed on a list of 54 products (i.e.

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  WTO, environmental goods

Pay attention to the WTO leadership contest: It matters!

Bernard Hoekman, Petros C. Mavroidis 03 April 2013

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The Director-General race

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  WTO, WTO Director-General, world trade governance

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