Monthly Archives: October 2010

Ergas on Cost-Benefit of the NBN

“After all, once the resources are spent, they are gone forever: no chance then of ensuring that they are put to good use. That is why the project should be carefully assessed before it is irreversibly committed. But there is an even more important reason for persevering [with demands for a cost-benefit analysis]: in public […]

A quick primer on exchange policy

On their own, threats of sanctions seem unlikely to move China. A “trade war” — say, a massive, bilateral, retaliatory hike in trade barriers between the USA and China — is a nuclear option in an era of global supply and production integration. Surely it’s a bluff because, inthe incandescent lyrics of Tom Lehrer: “We […]

ACTA Draft Treaty

It seems that the “near final” draft released a few days ago has been watered down a lot from earlier leaked drafts. Expectations management? Or actual disagreements between the parties? Since ACTA was an attempt to negotiate an treaty on enforcement of principles covered by the multilateral framework in secret and among a select group […]

Reading on climate

Debate about global warming is grubby because there are so many un-acknowledged private agendas running just below the surface. Many participants in the debate have something to gain (if only notoriety) from their advocacy. But attention to the question has provoked a lot of interesting research that tells us something about climate and something about […]

Back and forward (and back) in Geneva

News services have all picked up a statement by the U.S. negotiator for agriculture in WTO in which he claims there’s been “some progress” in the Doha negotiations in the past six months but it looks like there’ll beno new rules ahead of the U.S. Congress extending the farm bill subsidies in 2012. “Some progress“?! […]