Monthly Archives: September 2005

Does Koizumi have a broad reform agenda?

One of the problems for those who, like me, hoped that Koizumi’s victory in the recent elections would give him a mandate for more courageous economic reform, is that there is really no sign of such intentions from the man himself. He promised nothing except a ‘referendum’ on his postal reform—which is what he got, […]

Review of “Global Trade Advocate” in FT

Alan Beattie, the World Trade Editor for the Financial Times has reviewed Global Trade Advocate. Here’s a link to the non-subscription page version of the review (also over the fold). To make it easier for you to see what Alan is talking about when he mentions the ‘huge rewards’ from trade advocacy described in GTA, […]

A survey of business consultations on trade

Would you like to help me test a survey of businesses or NGOs that consult with governments on trade issues? I’ve been asked to create a survey for an Asian region group to help build a better ‘baseline’ dataset on the breadth, frequency and content of business-government and NGO-government exchanges on national participation in the […]

Bean-counting and bad faith

The treacle-like pace of the WTO negotiations prompts many academic commentators to rush the OpEd pages with claims of systemic faults or atherosclerosis. It’s undeniable that the WTO, like the UN, faces a bean counter’s nightmare: a membership whose size defeats easy decision-making, a vast range of rules, and negotiations that have almost fractal complexity. […]

Agriculture in an Australia-Japan FTA

I was invited to speak, last week, to the 43rd joint council meeting of the Australia-Japan Business Councils on the vexed topic of the inclusion of agricultural trade in any future Australia-Japan free trade agreement You’ll find a copy of the outline of my talk here and an on-line version of my slides in the […]

Borders matter

One of the central contentions of my book Global Trade Advocate is that borders have grown in importance as a consequence of the economic processes accompanying the apparently border-erasing process of globalization. Here’s confirmation from the CIA Something there is that loves a wall, perhaps. But the reasons are not always that admirable. “Stretching over […]

EC-China textile ‘circus’

Two highly experienced analysts nail the problem with the possible EC-China agreement on the ‘temporary’ quotas imposed by the European Communities on competitive garment imports. The nonsense about ‘temporary’ quotas and industry adjustment that never takes place has been going on for forty years. Joe Francois and Dean Spinanger point out that we should all […]