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1 WTO Reform Steve Charnovitz Carnegie Endowment September 15, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "1 WTO Reform Steve Charnovitz Carnegie Endowment September 15, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 WTO Reform Steve Charnovitz Carnegie Endowment September 15, 2009

2 2 Ideal- Perfectly Functioning WTO Legislative liberalizing trade, writing new rules against trade barriers, working cooperatively with other international organizations Judicial- DSU- Adjudicating disputes. Getting compliance. Executive- Enlightened leadership from Director- General. Organization carries out programs effectively (e.g., capacity building).

3 3 Reality- Not perfectly functioning WTO But not terrible. Judicial good. Executive good Problem is legislative/ negotiations

4 4 Doha Round Difficult from Start After trade law overload of Uruguay Round, the next round was expected by many close observers to be very hard. Path of negotiation leaves intractable issues for next round. Doha the outlier, not Cancun, Seattle, Hong Kong

5 5 WTO Out of Sync We are in an era of new government regulation of markets, but WTO law sets limits on regulation We are in an era of huge government subsidies, but WTO law sets limits on subsidies Recession has led to economic nationalism

6 6 Absence of US Leadership Multilateral trade negotiations have always made progress with US leadership No US leadership since early 2004 or so. Obama Administration embrace of protectionism (Buy America, Employ American Workers Act, tire tariffs, Mexico trucks) Obama campaigned on opposition to FTAs with Colombia, South Korea, and Panama No Fast Track for new trade negotiations or for Doha Round

7 7 WTO Reform Agenda Uri Dadush Paper Assisting Governments to Enact Autonomous Liberalization. TPRM Plurilateral agreements criteria, minimize effects on non-members, extension to non-members Harness energy of regional agreements Active Ministerial conferences Idea driven organization Secretariat as center of excellence

8 8 Plurilateral Agreements Criteria for plurilateral agreements good idea. Can also do outside the WTO

9 9 Regional Agreements Reject the stumbling block thesis But havent been a building block either Model: Competition among negotiations FTAs popular with US because of asymmetries of power WTO Committee should hold public hearings on each new PTA

10 10 Ministerial Conferences WTO Art. IV:1. HK 3 months late. No one cared. Geneva. Two years late Idea-driven requires ideas. On international plane, good ideas often come from social and economic actors DG report. ILO (employers and workers) Need NGO and private sector participation IUCN (90 states, 900 NGOs, some local governments) ILO

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