Monthly Archives: April 2004

Chinese subsidies for grains farmers

According to the official media, China’s cereal output dropped for the fifth consecutive year to 431 million tons last year. bq. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao last month announced the decision to rescind agricultural tax in five years, which means farmers’ burden would be reduced by as much as 11.8 billion yuan in each of the […]

Use of United States’ trade preferences

In the course of a piece on AGOA—the US African Growth and Opportunity Act which provides trade preferences for eligible African countries in the US market—”Ben Muse(link to Ben’s website)”:http://www.acsalaska.net/~benmuse/blog/2004_04_01_archive.html#108223159474153275 asks about evaluation of the programme. Click for larger image in a popup window There’s no doubt that it’s an important opportunity for several African […]

Does WTO membership increase trade?

“Arnold Kling”:http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/000449.html recently drew attention to the revision of a paper by “Andrew Rose(home page)”:http://faculty.haas.berkeley.edu/arose/ that questions whether the GATT/WTO improves world trade. Rose “asks(link to paper on NBER site)”:http://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/9273.html whether the WTO matters at all. Before him, he says, despite mountains of pro- and anti- GATT/WTO rhetoric, this crucial question has been buried by […]

Bantustan in Gaza

meta-creation_date: 18 April, 2004 An Israeli journalist “outlines”:http://www.tikkun.org/index.cfm/action/current/article/233.html the parallels between the “Sharon disengagement plan”:http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=416024&contrassID=1&subContrassID=1&sbSubContrassID=0&listSrc=Y and the failed attempts by South Africa’s former apartheid regime to ‘disengage’ from the problem of the black majority.

China FTA—-NZ pays its dues

The NZ Prime Minister has “announced”:http://www.beehive.govt.nz/ViewDocument.cfm?DocumentID=19432 an agreement to begin negotiations next year on a bilateral free trade agreement with China; the first OECD country to do so. The price of this priority is NZ acknowledgement that China is a “marketeconomy”. Although the NZ government says that this is just a ‘technical’ concession, the Chinese […]

More grand strategies

The EU is said to be ready to offer a discriminatory ‘regional’ trade deal to the countries of Mercosur (the Latin American regional group) that includes expanded access to European markets for farm goods in return for reduced pressure on Europe’s agricultural policies in the WTO negotiations. bq. The move is designed to weaken pressure […]

Protectionists enjoy imports, too

The “Australian Survey of Social Attitudes”:http://assda224-100.anu.edu.au/nesstarlight/index.jsp has published a database of frequency tables for answers to their 2003 attitude survey on a variety of topics. The survey shows Australians to be (along with other tendencies) xenophobic about investment, apprehensive about foreign competiton for jobs and more than a little protectionist. But they are equally avid […]