bilateralism & multilateralism
The UNCTAD negotiations held in Kochi to assess the impact of trade as per the WTO regime as well as the ASEAN FTA on the local agricultural and industrial sectors, elicited inadequate response from the stakeholders.
Singapore’s attitude toward free-trade agreements makes a sharp contrast with other countries in the region, such as Thailand: where Thailand has seen controversy over its proposed FTA with the United States, Singapore only seems to become more eager with time when it comes to inking FTAs with the rest of the world.
A proliferation of bilateral free trade deals in Asia risks creating a "spaghetti bowl" of overlapping measures that could actually harm companies, the head of the Asia Development Bank (ADB) said today.
Exporters are pressing the government to pursue bilateral free trade arrangements to enable them to benefit from liberalization instead of waiting until 2013 for developed countries to lift their subsidies on agricultural exports.
The competition over "mating" between countries and regions through free trade agreements is unusual. One hundred and twenty free trade agreements have been entered to date - 95 of them in the past five years. Fifteen agreements were reached last year and 37 are currently underway. Immediately after he came into office in 2001, US President George W. Bush pushed to enter free trade agreements, saying the United States was behind the European Union in making such pacts.
The Bush administration hopes to initiate more free-trade agreement (FTA) negotiations in 2006, possibly with South Korea and Malaysia, US Trade Representative Rob Portman says.
Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra Monday shot down a proposal for Parliament to debate free trade agreements (FTAs), including a draft being negotiated between Thailand and the United States. "I see no justification for legislative debate on FTAs as Parliament does not have qualified personnel to scrutinise the matter," he said.
Country-specific trade agreements might finally give way to an integrated trade agreement or organisation, indicated Abdul Quader Shaikh, Senior Economist, United States (US) Department of Commerce at a seminar on the WTO today.
After remaining silent during the WTO meeting in Hong Kong, December 2005, China has decided to focus on the bilateral free trade agreements (FTAs) and play a lead role in multilateral trade discussions during the year 2006.
Some observers believe that certain FTA provisions may lock the United
States into current intellectual property policies, inhibiting opportunities for future
reform. Others are concerned that under existing multilateral
agreements, the intellectual
property obligations found within one FTA may extend beyond that particular treaty
partner. Some perceive FTAs to be an inappropriate and unfair
vehicle for international intellectual property reforms due to the strong bargaining
position of the United States.
The hundreds of bilateral and regional trade deals around or being crafted is creating a brave new world for business, reports Daniel Hilken
William Jefferson Clinton once said that “the opposition to globalisation in the world is rooted in people who feel left out, left behind and stepped on in other countries.” Apparently, having accepted our status as doormats, the developing world has once again sent our highest authorities to the other end of the world to continue to hammer out a trade deal that maintains our city-mouse/country-mouse dynamic.
FTAs are now a significant U.S. trade policy tool. Their rapid emergence raises
some important policy issues for the US Congress as it considers implementing
legislation and monitors negotiations as part of its oversight responsibilities.
How credible is Thailand’s FTA policy? What can be done to improve it?
The Abu Dhabi Summit, which kicked-off yesterday evening, will come up to the expectations of 40 million Gulf nationals as it is likely to incorporate a road map for greater economic integration of the oil rich region.
Is Vietnam capable of signing an FTA when the essence of such an agreement is WTO++, with rules based on WTO rules? If we have not joined the WTO yet, how can we reach an FTA with Japan?
The GCC does not need Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), what it needs is Fair Trade agreements, said Mishal Hamed Kanoo, Deputy Chairman, the Kanoo Group, at the 4th GCC Economic Forum.
NGOs call upon WTO Members and their trade negotiators
to protect the public from the explosion of one-sided and harmful
regional and bilateral trade agreements that impose TRIPS plus
obligations on developing countries that undermine access to
The proliferation of bilateral trade deals among Asian countries is an undesirable fallout of the slow progress in global trade talks and against the interests of the poorest countries in the region, according to the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP).
When was the last time you heard Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh talk about the World Trade Organisation?