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Time to Renew the WTO

One could liken the World Trade Organization (WTO) reform process to the Japanese ritual of hanami (flower viewing), where everyone takes pause to appreciate the gift of the sakura cherry blossoms as a community. The current global trading system has generated opportunities for every member to pursue growth and prosperity through increased trade. We've come to rely on it and rarely stop to appreciate it. Members are now looking to renew the purpose and functioning of the WTO in at least three areas.

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Education for Africa: Technology Symbol African Woman Studying Learning Lesson

Have Trade “Preference” Programs Kept Up with the Times?

The concept of creating a generalized, non-reciprocal system of preferences for developing countries dates back to 1968. But enabling legitimate forms of discrimination has predictably had positive and negative consequences and there’s little economic data to demonstrate the programs have accrued significant benefits.

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Bracketology: Drafting Trade Agreements

The art of bracketology is crucial in both March Madness and trade negotiations. Consensus is the goal, as trade negotiation texts move from “plenary” sessions with all 164 players on the court to a single agreed text, often with the help of chairperson who serves at turns as coach, referee, and cheerleader for the negotiations.

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Lapham’s Quarterly on Trade

If you haven’t been in a bookstore lately, now is the time to close up your laptop and seek out the Spring 2019 edition of Lapham’s Quarterly dedicated to the topic of trade. The journal takes you through time through the eyes of those who trade, from an Assyrian king to an American mink maker testifying last year on the impact of a tariff war with China.

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Breaking Bad Trade: Fentanyl from China

There are some in the United States who are frustrated with the administration's willingness to toss out the traditional trade policy playbook, but if trade talks over soybeans and intellectual property protections can be leveraged to address illicit trade in deadly fentanyl, we can all get on board with that.

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Survey on trade

Public Opinion on Trade: Engaging the “I Don’t Knows”

Most Americans feel uncertain about the benefits of trade and trade policies for our own communities. In national polls, the higher the level of uncertainty, the increased likelihood individuals will check the “I don’t know” box.

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A High Wire Act: The Trump Administration and Section 232

The current administration's use of Section 232 to impose trade-restrictive measures on imports of steel and aluminum has become the source of increasing domestic discontent among steel-using industries, farmers who are the target of retaliatory tariffs, and Members of Congress who are reconsidering having delegated powers over trade to the President. It has also put WTO dispute settlement to an unwelcome test.

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Online Microwork and Freelancing: Tapping Into the Global Talent Pool

I have an affliction that involves seeing trade in everything. Take my recent experience hiring a freelance graphic designer on the website Fiverr. I thought it would be fun to convert the photos of the TradeVistas team members into illustrations. For $5 per illustration, it was a bargain. With this small project I was introduced […]

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Cash Feeding China

Feeding China’s State-Owned Enterprises With Government Cash

China went from a net importer of critical intermediary goods such as glass, paper, steel, and auto parts, to becoming the leading producer and dominant global exporter of these products. How could this seismic shift occur in industries where China does not maintain a particular advantage in labor, technology, or natural resources? The answer in large part is subsidization of Chinese production in the form of state-directed capital flows.

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Competition Provisions in Trade Agreements: A Brief Introduction

Competition Provisions in Trade Agreements: A Brief Introduction

After a decade of setting the topic aside in the WTO, concerns appear to be rising to surface again that certain anti-competitive government practices may not be covered sufficiently – or at all – by provisions in global trade agreements.

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