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Multilateralizing Regionalism: Challenges for the Global Trading System

Edited by: Richard Baldwin, Patrick Low

ISBN13: 9780521738101
Published: February 2009
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Paperback
Price: £44.99



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Regional trade agreements (RTAs) have proliferated around the world in the past two decades, and now nearly all members of the WTO are party to at least one. Besides tariffs and rules of origin regulating trade in goods, many RTAs now include provisions on services, investments, technical barriers to trade and competition rules, as well as a host of issues not directly related to trade.

The geographic reach of RTAs is expanding, with transcontinental agreements spreading forcefully alongside intra-regional agreements. Multilateralizing Regionalism was the title of a major conference held from 10–12 September 2007 at the WTO in Geneva. Brought together in this publication, the conference papers achieve two things. First, they marshall detailed, new empirical work on the nature of the ‘Spaghetti Bowl’ and the problems it poses for the multilateral trade system. Second, they contribute fresh and creative thinking on how to ‘tame the tangle’ of regional trade agreements.

  • Revised papers benefit from discussion between 70 trade scholars and analysts, as well as over 100 members of the various national delegations of the WTO
  • Examines how to globalise the benefits of regional liberalisation, the key problem for policy makers who believe the post-war multilateral trading regime of the GATT/WTO is worth saving
  • Further advances the discussion over how to multilateralise the benefits of regional liberalisation

Subjects:
International Trade
Contents:
Foreword Pascal Lamy
Introduction Richard Baldwin and Patrick Low

Part I. Background to Regionalism:
1. An historical perspective of regionalism Theresa Carpenter
2. The landscape of regional trade arrangements and WTO surveillance Roberto V. Fiorentino, Jo-Ann Crawford and Christelle Toqueboeuf

Part II. Multilateralisaton - Prospects and Past Experience:
3. Beyond tariffs: multilateralising non-tariff RTA commitments Simon Evenett and Patrick Low
Comment S. Miroudot
4. Multilateralising regionalism: lessons from the EU experience in relaxing rules of origin Michael Gasiorek
5. The information technology agreement: sui generis or model stepping stone? Catherine Mann and Xuepeng Liu
Comment Alejandro Jara

Part III. Multilateralisation - Sectors and Themes:
6. Services provisions in regional trade agreements: stumbling or building blocks for multilateral liberalization? Carsten Fink and Marion Jansen
7. Harmonizing preferential rules of origin regimes around the world Jeremy Harris
Comment Olivier Cadot
8. Legal avenues to 'multilateralising regionalism': beyond article XXIV Joost Pauwelyn

Part IV. Multilateralization - Regional Perspectives:
9. Multilateralising regionalism: case study of African regionalism Peter Draper and Mzukisi Qobo
10. Multilateralising RTAs in the Americas Antoni Estevadeordal, Matthew Shearer and Kati Suominen
Comment Marcelo Olearraga
11. Multilateralising regional trade arrangements in Asia Masahiro Kawai and Ganesh Wignaraja
Comment I. Cheong
12. Fitting Asia-Pacific agreements into the WTO system Gary Hufbauer and Jeffrey Shott
13. Multilateralising preferential trade agreements: a developing country perspective Bernard Hoekman and L. Alan Winters
Comment P. Levy
14. The challenge of negotiating RTAs for developing countries. What could the WTO do to help? Jim Rollo
Comment C. Barfield.