Third World Network - June 2023
Decoding the IPEF
By Abhijit Das
IPEF is designed by the US for its own prosperity, with developing countries unlikely to gain anything significant from it. Further, the policy space available to developing countries to nurture their domestic producers of green goods and digital products is likely to be substantially curtailed by rules under the IPEF. It is also relevant to point out that even if the IPEF does not eventually include dispute settlement provisions, and despite some of the provisions appearing to be only statements of intent and more in the nature of cooperation, the US has the following options for ensuring their implementation by the developing countries: raising non-compliance in the IPEF Supply Chain Council and the tripartite Labour Rights Committee; raising non-compliance in bilateral trade and investment forums such as the India-US Trade Policy Forum; threatening action under its Section 301 law for non-compliance by developing countries; alleging that the other country did not negotiate in good faith; and threatening not to support a developing country on larger geo-strategic issues if it does not implement the cooperation-based provisions.
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