Call for Publications

WTO Issues

Constitutional Economics of the WTO
It examines the World Trade Organization (WTO) from the social scientific perspective of constitutional economics. This chapter thus seeks to identify the causes and consequences of constitutionalization. Assuming that states act with intentionality and accuracy in their establishment of organizational features, the cause of constitutionalization is the desire to effect the consequences of constitutionalization, so the focus here is on the potential consequences of constitutionalization in and in connection with the WTO.

Trade and Competition Policy in the Developing World: Is There a Role for the WTO
This paper considers the possibilities that the member states of the WTO would adopt some kind of antitrust provision. Initially, the paper reviews the historical relation of competition policy to trade policy, from the Havana Conference to the present. It then reviews the conflicts between the developing and developed countries in the GATT. The paper explores the differences between the mind-set of legislators adopting a competition law and trade negotiators bargaining for a multilateral reduction in tariffs.

Behind the July Failure of the WTO Talks on Doha
The failure of the “mini-ministerial” negotiations at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on July 21-29 has sent shockwaves throughout the world. This is because there is the feeling that this time it may have spelt the final collapse of the Doha Work Programme (the official name for what is now called the Doha round). As several ministers indicated to the media at press conferences after the talks failed, the United States’ (US) presidential elections campaign may make it impossible for any new serious negotiations to take place now, and it will be a year into the new president’s term before the US can meaningfully engage again.

The new geopolitics of trade and the collapse of the mini-ministerial at the WTO: was it “only” about the Special Safeguard Mechanism (SSM)?
This article from IGTN suggests that the recent collapse of the WTO mini-ministerial, July 2008, reflects the new geopolitics of the global economy. The emerging economies are approaching trade issues and negotiations differently. Particularly they place more emphasis on supporting women employed in agriculture. There is new conviction among negotiators that poverty and livelihood issues cannot be left to the market to be regulated. These concerns contributed to the collapse alongside the Special Safeguard Mechanism (SSM) issues.

Social Clause in WTO and Core ILO Labour Standards: Concerns of India and Other Developing Countries
This paper addresses the concerns linking trade with WTO and its effect on developing countries and the ILO core labour standard conventions and India’s adherence to these core conventions. The whole study is divided into four sections in which the first one gives an introduction to the subject and an overview of the issue of social clause in WTO and core labour standards. The second part will discuss the core labour standard conventions of the ILO. The third section gives Indian adherence to the core standards and an overview of the Indian labour legislations dealing with the issue.

Regional Economic Cooperation

Regional Economic Integration & Trade Flows: The Experience of Asean-5 and Japan
This study determines the effect of regional economic integration, namely the ASEAN Free Trade Area, on bilateral trade flows between the ASEAN-5 countries and their major trading partner, Japan. The analysis begins with the construction of a simple country-specific index based on the Common Effective Preferential Tariff (CEPT) scheme of AFTA to measure the progress of economic integration of each ASEAN-5 country. The index is then used to determine the effect of this economic integration on bilateral trade flows between the individual ASEAN-5 country and Japan. The empirical results of this study based on the Autoregressive Distributed Lag (ARDL).

Despite Doha collapse, free trade is marching on
The Doha Round didn’t die this week in Geneva. It died five years ago in Cancun, when certain ministers determined that the negotiations would be more valuable as a stage to dazzle domestic audiences than as a means to an agreement. This week finally provided that clarity. Although a successful Doha conclusion would have been welcome – if for nothing more than reaffirming nations’ commitments to the rules-based system and justifying seven years of time and expense – the Round’s failure is not a big economic setback. Ironically, it could be the catalyst ………

Dispute Settlement Under PTAs: Political or Legal?
The trend for PTAs to include formal legal processes for dispute settlement raises many interesting issues. This paper focuses on three central questions: (a) To what extent can dispute settlement under PTAs be characterised as diplomatic and political rather than legal? (b) Why is there an absence of appellate review in the dispute settlement mechanisms of most PTAs? (c) Which forum(s) is (are) appropriate for resolving disputes under PTAs? In reviewing these issues, the paper also considers some aspects of the interaction and relationship between ……….

Caribbean Integration and Global Europe: Implications of the EPA for the CSME
This paper critically assesses the compatibility of the CARIFORUM-EC EPA with the proposed CARICOM Single Market and Economy—CSME. Cross-cutting compatibility issues include development strategy and the role of regional integration, policy space and governance; and sectoral compatibility issues relate to trade in goods, services and trade-related issues. The main conclusion is that the CSME, a project for the creation/strengthening of the regional economy for engagement with globalisation; will be superseded by the EPA, which involves a high degree of bilateral integration of individual Cariforum countries with Europe in trade ………

Bilateral Free Trade Agreements and Customs Unions: The Impact of the EU Republic of South Africa Free Trade Agreement on Botswana
The EU has indicated that after 2008 its trade relationships with developing countries will be dominated by the development of preferential trade agreements. Although not a consequence of the Cotonou Agreement, the free trade agreement between the EU and the Republic of South Africa (EU RSA FTA) was clearly one of the first fruits of this approach to trade relationships. However, there is no evidence that the design of the EU RSA FTA incorporated a comprehensive general equilibrium evaluation of the agreement for either the signatories or the other southern African nations. The analyses reported ……….

Developmental Issues

A ‘New’ Approach to Global Value Chain Analysis
This paper uses new trade/new growth theories to better contextualise Global Value Chain (GVC) analysis of ‘traditional’ and ‘non-traditional’ agricultural trade. Research suggests that GVC governance structures may limit or enhance the applicability of new trade/new growth theories in terms of ‘learning by doing’; and therefore the ability to value chain upgrade. This paper tries to bridge the current divergence between input:output and value distribution approaches to GVC analysis. The case is made that both aspects are central to understanding upgrading processes within agricultural GVCs and growth through trade.

Can Ethical Trade Certification Contribute to the Attainment of the Millennium Development Goals? A Review of Organic and Fair-Trade Certification
The growth of ethical consumerism in developed countries has led to increased imports of environmentally and socially certified products produced by the poor in developing countries, which could potentially contribute towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Organic products and fair-trade products are among the rapidly growing “ethical trade” products. This market development trend utilizes certification systems that ensure impartiality in assessment products produced in developing countries. ………

Is Higher Demand for Biofuels Fuelling Food Prices?
Against the mounting evidence that expansion of biofuels from food crops such as corn, rapeseed, soybean and even wheat and other coarse grains has been one of the key drivers of food prices during recent years, policymakers in both the United States (US) as well as European Union (EU) are trying to sidetrack attention by putting forward arguments that increasing demand for food in developing countries is the dominant factor pushing up food prices. While it is true that increased consumption of food in developing countries is an important factor … … …

Poverty alleviation and child labor
Does child labor decrease as household income rises? This question has important implications for the design of policy on child labor. This paper focuses on a program of unconditional cash transfers in Ecuador. It argues that the effect of a small increase in household income on child labor should be concentrated among children most vulnerable to transitioning from schooling to work. The paper finds support for this hypothesis. Cash transfers have small effects on child time allocation at peak school attendance ages and among children already out of school ………

The Developing World Is Poorer Than We Thought, But No Less Successful in the Fight against Poverty
The paper presents a major overhaul to the World Bank’s past estimates of global poverty, incorporating new and better data. Extreme poverty—as judged by what “poverty” means in the world’s poorest countries—is found to be more pervasive than we thought. Yet the data also provide robust evidence of continually declining poverty incidence and depth since the early 1980s. For 2005 we estimate that 1.4 billion people, or one quarter of the population of the developing world, lived below our international line of $1.25 a day in 2005 prices; 25 years earlier there were 1.9 billion poor, or one half of the population.

Call for Publications

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