International trade has, for decades, been central to economic growth and improved standards of living for nations and regions worldwide. For most of the advanced countries, trade has raised standards of living, while for most emerging economies, growth did not begin until their integration into the global economy. The economic explanation is simple: international trade facilitates specialization, increased efficiency and improved productivity to an extent impossible in closed economies. However, recent years have seen a significant slowdown in global trade, and the global system has increasingly come under attack from politicians on the right and on the left. The benefits of open markets, the continuation of international co-operation, and the usefulness of multilateral institutions such as the World Trade Organization (WTO), the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank have all been called into question. While globalization has had a broadly positive effect on overall global welfare, it has also been perceived by the public as damaging communities and social classes in the industrialized world, spawning, for example, Brexit and the US exit from the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
The purpose of this volume is to examine international and regional preferential trade agreements (PTAs), which offer like-minded countries a possible means to continue receiving the benefits of economic liberalization and expanded trade. What are the strengths and weaknesses of such agreements, and how can they sustain growth and prosperity for their members in an ever-challenging global economic environment?
The Handbook is divided into two parts. The first, Global Themes, offers analysis of issues including the WTO, trade agreements and economic development, intellectual property rights, security and environmental issues, and PTAs and developing countries. The second part examines regional and country-specific agreements and issues, including NAFTA, CARICOM, CETA, the Pacific Alliance, the European Union, EFTA, ECOWAS, SADC, TTIP, RCEP and the TPP (now the CPTPP), as well as the policies of countries such as Japan and Australia.
The Editor and Contributors
Acronyms and Abbreviations
Robert E. Looney
2. Regional trade agreements: Myths and misconceptions
3. The WTO and Regional/Bilateral Trade Agreements
Kimberly Ann Elliott
4. International Agreements on Intellectual Property Rights: TRIPS and Beyond
Keith E. Maskus
5. The Spread of International Trade Agreements: A Dynamics Towards The ‘Spaghetti Bowl’ Phenomenon?
6. The Economic Effects of FTAs
7. Trade Agreements and Economic Development
8. The Investment Component of Trade Agreements
9. Trade Agreements and National Security: An Economic Approach
Ryan Garcia and Jonathan Lipow
10. Economic Reform and Service Liberalization in Developing Countries: Can Preferential Trade Agreements Help?
11. Gender Rights and Trade Agreements
12. Trade Agreements and the Environment
13. Neoliberal Globalization and Its Opponents
Anne L. Clunan
Robert A. Blecker
15. CAFTA-DR: Diverging Trajectories and Uneven Development
17. Mexico’s Approach to Preferential Agreements
Luz Maria de la Mora Sanchez
Walter Antonio Desiderá Neto
20. The Pacific Alliance
Gian Luca Gardini
22. The European Union
Marius Vahl and Aslak Berg 25. Eastern Partnership Countries
26. Trade Agreements and Regional Integration: The European Union After Brexit
Annette Bongardt and Francisco Torres
27. The GCC Trade Agreements: Regional Integration Challenges and Opportunities
Joseph A. Kéchichian
28. Liberalization Without Integration: Egypt and PTAs (1990-2010)
29. The African Union and the European Union: Trade Reciprocity and/or Economic Development?
30. ECOWAS: An Economic Commitment that needs Political Strengthening
31. The SADC: Towards a Deeper and Wider Union?
Donald L. Sparks
32. COMESA: A Case Study
B. Seetanah, RV Sannassee, S. Fauzel and Paul Okiira Okwi
33. The RCEP and Asian Economic Integration
34. The TPP: Origins and Outcomes
Jeffrey J. Schott
35. Japan’s Approach to PTAs
Gregory P. Corning
36. Australia’s Approach to PTAs