International Trade and Developing Countries: Bargaining Coalitions in GATT and WTO (Hardback) book cover

International Trade and Developing Countries

Bargaining Coalitions in GATT and WTO

By Amrita Narlikar

© 2004 – Routledge

256 pages

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A keen analysis of how and why countries bargain together in groups in world affairs, and why such coalitions are crucial to individual developing nations. It also reveals the effects these negotiating blocs are having on world affairs.

Successful coalition building has proven to be a difficult and expensive process. Allies are often not obvious and need to be carefully identified. Large numbers do not necessarily entail a proportionate increase in influence. And the weak have the choice of teaming up against or jumping on the bandwagon with the strong. Even after it has been organised, collective action entails costs of many kinds.

This book investigates the relevance and workability of coalitions as instruments of bargaining power for the weak. More specifically, this analyzes the coalition strategies of developing countries at the inter-state level, particularly in the context of international trade.

Given the nature of this enquiry, this new study uses theoretical and empirical methods to complement each other. The theoretical approach draws from a plethora of writings: formal theories of clubs and coalitions, theories of domestic political economy and theories of international relations. The empirical analysis of comparable coalitions becomes necessary to assist in this theorising, so the greater part of the book focuses mainly (though not exclusively) on coalitions involving developing countries on the issue-area of trade in services. Through the case-studies of the Uruguay Round and an analytical overview of more recent coalitions, this text fills an important gap in the literature of international political economy and international relations where most GATT/WTO-based coalitions have eluded record.

This book will be of great interest to all students of international relations, politics and globalization.


'An important and insightful book of great interest to anyone seeking to understand the dynamics of the past, present and future negotiating rounds, as well as developing country coalition behaviour in other international arenas.'

Sean W. Burges, International Affairs

'In a nutshell, for everyone interested in understanding how the coalitions of developing countries should be devised and work in negotiations within WTO issues in special Trade in Services, this book is essential reading.'

Rogerio de Souza Farias, Political Studies Review

"Narlikar's book is a sophisticated and well written analysis that represents a significant contribution to the literature on international trade negotiations."

Professor Wyn Grant, Review of International Studies

"Narlikar’s book is an impressively rigorous and informed study of the role and efficacy of bargaining coalitions, especially but not exclusively of developing countries, for trade negotiations in both the GATT (especially the Uruguay Round) and the WTO (up to Doha). The book is written in an accessible style and provides a valuable addition to the collection of anybody interested in multilateral trade negotiations."

Oliver Morrissey, Journal of International Development

Table of Contents

Introduction: Bargaining Together: Why and How? Coalitions in the GATT and the Entry of Services 1. Bloc Diplomacy: The Informal Group and the G-10 2. Alliance Diplomacy: The Issue-Based, Crossover Coalitions of G-20 and Café au Lait 3. Combination Diplomacy: Issue-Based Blocs and Sub-Sectoral Crossover Coalitions 4. Evolved Alliances: The Cairns Group and Chapter 5. Friends of Services Group 6. Regionalism: A Springboard for Bargaining? 7. Coalitions of the New Round: Developing Countries 8. At Seattle and Doha 9. Conclusion Bibliography

About the Author

Amrita Narlikar is Lecturer at the Centre of International Studies, University of Cambridge; Senior Research Associate at the Centre for International Studies, University of Oxford; member of the Economic Negotiations Network based at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles and the Latin American Trade Network, Buenos Aires.

About the Series

RIPE Series in Global Political Economy

For almost two decades now, the RIPE Series published by Routledge has been an essential forum for cutting-edge scholarship in International Political Economy. The series brings together new and established scholars working in critical, cultural and constructivist political economy. Books in the RIPE Series typically combine an innovative contribution to theoretical debates with rigorous empirical analysis.

The RIPE Series seeks to cultivate:

  • Field-defining theoretical advances in International Political Economy
  • Novel treatments of key issue areas, both historical and contemporary, such as global finance, trade, and production
  • Analyses that explore the political economic dimensions of relatively neglected topics, such as the environment, gender relations, and migration
  • Accessible work that will inspire advanced undergraduates and graduate students in International Political Economy.

James Brassett – Warwick

Eleni Tsingou – Copenhagen Business School

Susanne Soederberg – Queen’s

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / International Relations / General
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Economic Conditions
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / Economic Policy