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bilateralism & multilateralism

UNCTAD talks on trade remain inconclusive
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.
Trade agreements key strategy for Singapore
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.
Asia risks spaghetti bowl trade deal mess: ADB
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.
Philippines: Exporters press free trade pacts
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.
Work for a win-win agreement
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.
United States planning more free-trade negotiations in 2006
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.
Thaksin says no to parliamentary debate on FTA
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.
Bilateral trade deals to end, predicts expert
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.
China : Mainland to negotiate FTA with 27 nations: Bo Xilai
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.
CRS Report for Congress: Intellectual property and FTAs
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.
Tangled web we weave
The hundreds of bilateral and regional trade deals around or being crafted is creating a brave new world for business, reports Daniel Hilken
Trade liberalisation without co-operation a no-no
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.
Free trade agreements: Impact on US trade and implications for US trade policy
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.
Thailand’s new FTAs and its trade policies post-Asia crisis: an assessment
How credible is Thailand’s FTA policy? What can be done to improve it?
Economic integration of GCC states on cards
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.
What is the cost for missing the WTO train?
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?
GCC needs Fair Trade Agreements
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.
NGO statement on need for WTO moratorium on regional and bilateral trade agreements undermining access to health
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 medicine.
Bilateral trade deals not good for developing Asia: UNESCAP
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).
Bilateral truths
When was the last time you heard Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh talk about the World Trade Organisation?