Category Archives: Trade

Is it time for WTO 2.0?

Richard Baldwin, whose writing I like and whose scholarship I respect, thinks so. But I disagree for reasons I spell out (after summarizing RB’s argument) in my paper that you can download here In brief: if we could really do what needs to be done in a WTO 2.0, then we wouldn’t need WTO 2.0 […]

Supply management has no place in the TPP

It would be madness for Australia to agree to admit Canada to the TPP “free trade” negotiations on the basis that they might keep their astronomically high barriers to some food imports. The Canadian Trade Minister, Ed Fast, told reporters this week that he believes Canada has “public support” from six of the nine countries […]

Governed by the gutless?

Alan Beattie’s new booklet “Who’s in Charge Here” (Amazon) is an amusing, accurate, accessible account of the current mess in global financial and trade “governance.” Well worth the $3 price. But he draws a “lesson” from his little history of the crises of 2008-2011 that I find un-satisfying. Who’s in Charge Here is a valuable […]

Nothing to see here

Is there any point in continuing to puzzle over trade policy and agreements? Do they really make any difference to anything? It seems they’ve become too hard to put together; but does that matter? Since about 2001, I’ve been writing a weblog analysing international trade agreements, national trade policies and the post-WWII “system” of government […]

“Critical Mass” on US business agenda

The US National Foreign Trade Council has released a short paper (PDF file) endorsing a “critical mass” (CM) approach to new WTO-associated trade agreements, without, however, producing any new ideas on how to accomplish this in the current multilateral trade framework. A top U.S. business group, frustrated with years of stalemate in world trade talks, […]

A bearish view of global governance

If there were a ratings agency for the credibility of “global governance” institutions, the WTO’s would have been downgraded to a “B” at best[1] after the collapse of the Doha Round negotiations. The triple crown of benign global governance — a prosperous, well-regulated global “commons,” the sovereignty of nation-states and the assent of the governed […]

A miracle on Lake Léman?

Geoff Kitney in today’s AFR wants you to believe Mark Emerson has “rescued the Doha round of trade negotiations from collapse” by convincing all other Members to adopt his/Julia’s plan to “keep the talks alive”. Contrast that breathless dispatch with this from Reuters: “WTO Meeting Ends with No Move Forward on Doha”. Or how about […]