Politics of World Trade
Shotaro OSHIMA / Yuji IWASAWA
Credits / Language / Semester
2Credits / English / Summer
Today, there is much talk about TPP, or Trans Pacific Partnership agreement negotiation among Japan and 11 other nations around the rim of the Pacific. This negotiation and the counterpart negotiation between the US and the EU, or the T-TIP, Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership agreement, are the major movers of global trade and investment liberalization.
Why is this so? What has happened to the WTO, which is the primary institution representing the rules-based multilateral trading system, which worked well since the inception of the GATT, WTO’s predecessor institution, established in 1947?
This course will study the world trading system since the establishment of the GATT, and its evolution. It will try to understand why in recent years multilateral trade liberalization negotiations, namely the so-called Doha Development Agenda, launched by the WTO members in 2001 have stalled, why FTAs have been proliferating around the world, in obvious cross-purposes with the WTO efforts, and why today TPP has become the major focus in the Asia-Pacific region.
World Trade, WTO, DDA, FTA, TPP
PART ONE: INTRODUCTION
Session 1: GLOBAL TRADE AND MULTILATERAL TRADING SYSTEM
Session 2: OVERVIEW OF THE CURRENT INTERNATIONAL TRADE POLICY ISSUES
PART TWO: MAJOR TRADING COUNTRIES and EU:
(Each “trade representative” will report on his/her respective country’s trade structure (e.g. describe its tariff schedule), basic trade policy orientation, internal political structure relevant to trade policy formulation: 10 minutes each)
AUSTRALIA*, BANGLADESH, BRAZIL, CHINA, EU, INDIA, INDONESIA, JAPAN*, KOREA, MEXICO*, RUSSIA, SINGAPORE*, US* (Top 12 Trading nations and the Top LDC; * indicates TPP negotiation members)
Session 3: REPORTING; AUSTRALIA, BANGLADESH, BRAZIL, CHINA, EU, INDIA
Session 4: REPORTING; INDONESIA, JAPAN, KOREA, MEXICO, RUSSIA, SINGAPORE, US
PART THREE: TRADING SYSTEM ISSUES
(Trading-system issues will be discussed according to the topics assigned for the following three sessions. After an introductory explanation, students will report on his/her country’s Trade Liberalization Strategy, such as priorities given to WTO/DDA, in particular sectors and areas of interest, FTA/EPA strategy, as well as importance given to regional cooperation.)
Session 5: Basic Principles: MFN & NT; Commitments and Disputes (predictability and security)
Part I: General Discussions on topics for the session)
Part II: Reports from 4 developed members: AUSTRALIA; EU; JAPAN; US;
Session 6: From GATT to WTO via Uruguay Round; new areas Services, IP; Doha round
Part I: General Discussions on topics for the session:
Part II: Reports from “emerging economy” countries: BRAZIL, CHINA, INDIA, INDONESIA, RUSSIA
Session 7: Protectionism, Trade remedies, Regulatory measures (TBT and SPS)
Part I: General Discussions on topics for the session:
Part II: Reports from other major or important trading countries: BANGLADESH, KOREA, MEXICO, SINGAPORE
PART FOUR: TRADE ISSUES
(Members will report on their respective industrial and trade policies in the three sectors of Autos / Agriculture/ Services with focus on their respective negotiating positions)
Session 8: REPORTING: CHINA; JAPAN; KOREA: US
Session 9: REPORTING: AUSTRALIA; BANGLADESH; EU; INDIA
Session 10: REPORTING: BRAZIL; INDONESIA; MEXICO; RUSSIA; SINGAPORE
PART FIVE: POLITICS OF MULTILATERALILSM VS PREFERENTIALISM
Session 11: Discussion on the future course of trade liberalization, with particular focus on the WTO trade round and bilateral or regional preferential agreement negotiations)
Session 12: Discussion on TPP, T-TIP and other MEGA FTAs
Session 13: Discussion on the future of the multilateral trading system
ELECT or SELECT Chairperson for Mock Negotiations
PART SIX: MOCK NEGOTIATION
Session 14: FULL DAY? FOR MOCK NEGOTIATION
Session 15: POST MORTEM
The course will be organized as a seminar where students are expected to take active part in discussions.
Each student will be role-playing as a Trade Representative of one of the following important trading countries/entities and will engage in discussions on specific trade policy issues from his/her “adopted” country’s perspective and, near the end of the course, take part in mock-negotiations.
The countries/entities to be represented are;
(* indicates parties to TPP negotiation)
Depending on the size of the class, there may be more than one student assigned to a country/entity. No one will be assigned to his/her country of citizenship.
Throughout the course, students will make contributions to the class by reporting on their respective positions on various subjects and issues. Each member will make one short report and two 10-15 minute reports as specified above in the SCHEDULE.
In the penultimate session, students will engage in mock trade negotiation, which could be called “Informal Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Trade”, to produce a consensus document providing the guidelines on various challenges facing the international trade and investment system.
At the end of the course, students shall hand in a TERM PAPER (of about 10 pages) in which they will predict the international trade scene in 2025. To be more specific, the paper should foretell the prospects of;
1) Multilateral trade (and investment) liberalization negotiations,
2) TPP and other FTAs around the world, and
3) East Asian Economic Community
This exercise of “predicting” is essentially a matter of making an “educated guess” which would require one to “educate” oneself in order to make a more realistic “guess.”
1) term paper 50%
2) reports in class 40%
3) participation in class discussions and commitment to learning 10%
Hoekman, Bernard M., & Kostecki, Michel M.: The Political Economy of the World Trading System ? The WTO and Beyond (Third Edition); Oxford
Ikenberry, G. John: After Victory; Princeton
Jackson, John H.: The World Trading System (Second Edition); MIT Press
Baldwin, Richard, and Low, Patrick (edited): Multilateralizing Regionalism, Challenges for the Global Trading System; Cambridge
Munakata, Naoko: Transforming East Asia; The Evolution or Regional Economic Integration; Brookings/RIETI
Multitude of references accessible at the WTO HP, and for individual member information much can be obtained from official HP’s
Notes on Taking the Course
Good English to be able to write a solid term paper