Monthly Archives: December 2005

Google wool

A _zeitgeist_ is a spir­it of the times. “Google”: can, prob­a­bly, pre­tend to mea­sure it, at least for a large pro­por­tion of peo­ple in Europe, the Amer­i­c­as and parts of Asia using the sub­ject of queries to it’s data­bas­es as a proxy. But odd­ly, they chooseon­ly to _pretend_ to tell us what it is. For […]

Ten observations about the WTO’s first decade

As of Sat­ur­day 16, there was lit­tle con­sen­sus inside the Hong Kong Con­fer­ence Cen­ter as you can read from the press cov­er­age, except that the Euro­pean Community’s nego­ti­at­ing posi­tion is unac­cept­able to every­one else. The atmos­phere is poi­so­nous and the dis­cus­sions, even in the small­est and most senior infor­mal groups (the ‘green room’ meet­ings orga­nized […]

A few days in Hong Kong

I will be speak­ing at an “aca­d­e­m­ic conference”: in Hong Kong on Fri­day at the invi­ta­tion of Prof Hen­ry Gao at Hong Kong Uni­ver­si­ty. My talk will be based on “WTO: The First Ten Years”: which appeared a week or so back. It will be good to catch up with many friends who will also […]

Predictions for 2006

Some of my guess­es for trade and pub­lic pol­i­cy out­comes next year h4. A few pre­dic­tions for 2006 #(relaxed) The *WTO nego­ti­a­tions* will con­clude in Gene­va in the third quar­ter, bare­ly leav­ing time to cre­ate and ver­i­fy a hun­­dred-thou­sand pages of com­mit­ment sched­ules before the US nego­ti­at­ing author­i­ty expires. After five years of talks, the […]

WTO seen from the banks of the Zambezi

A great “report”: from Alan Beat­tie of the frus­tra­tions of Dipak Patel, the Zam­bian Min­is­ter for Trade, try­ing to man­age the inter­ests of a least-devel­oped African econ­o­my in the glob­al trad­ing sys­tem Beat­tie’ report is full of accu­rate­ly observed detail, not just about the sar­cas­tic Patel’s des­per­ate lack of resources but also about the hope­less­ly […]