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The rise of bilateralism: comparing American, European and Asian approaches to preferential trade agreements

Heydon, Kenneth and Woolcock, Stephen (2009) The rise of bilateralism: comparing American, European and Asian approaches to preferential trade agreements. United Nations University Press, Tokyo, Japan. ISBN 9789280811629

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Abstract

As multilateral negotiations become increasingly complex and protracted, preferential trade agreements have become the centrepiece of trade diplomacy, pushing beyond tariffs into deep integration and beyond regionalism into a web of bilateral deals, raising concerns about coercion by bigger players. This study examines American, European and Asian approaches to preferential trade agreements and their effect on trade, investment and economic welfare. It draws on the rich field of theoretical works, but also fills a gap in the literature by examining in detail the actual substance of agreements negotiated and envisaged. With bilateralism in trade driven by foreign policy, environmental and social concerns, as well as market access objectives, the key question today is not preferential agreements or multilateralism, but how the various negotiating forums interact. This volume argues that preferential agreements can complement the multilateral system but only if that system is strong enough to continue to reduce barriers to trade and strengthen rules and so limit the distorting effects of bilateralism.

Item Type: Book
Official URL: http://www.cris.unu.edu/
Additional Information: © 2007 The authors
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
H Social Sciences > HG Finance
Sets: Departments > International Relations
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Date Deposited: 21 Mar 2011 13:00
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/33482/

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