International Trade

  • Is the U.S. Congress attempting to usurp IMF powers?

    Enforceable Currency Disciplines and International Trade

    Ever since the post-gold standard age of adjustable exchange rates was inaugurated in the mid-1930s to consensually engineer a negotiated depreciation, the question of exchange rates and of trade have been entwined and subject to international oversight. This certainly should not mean that US trade policy bureaucrats should obtain the power to usurp the IMF’s (and the Treasury Department’s) statutory authority and assess, and enforce, exchange values.

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  • Passing TPA to benefit the TPP.

    Moving on with the TPP through TPA

    Reports exaggerated the significance of the May 12 procedural vote in the US Senate.  Some called it a rebuke of Obama.  Others said it was a stunning blow or a sharp defeat. It was none of these things. After looking at what happened, we quickly concluded that this was an easily fixable minor setback.

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  • India PM Modi's world tour stops in China.

    India PM Modi's Next Tour Stop in China

    China and India are ready for breakthrough diplomacy that has the potential to reorder the face of Asia, while supporting global growth prospects.

    From May 14th to 16th, India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, will make a three-day trip to China and meet President Xi Jinping. It can be seen as Act 2 to the September 2014 visit President Xi made with Prime Minister Modi in New Delhi. The meeting did result in substantial trade deals but not yet in a diplomatic breakthrough.

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  • The surprising defeat of trade promotion authority is a setback for Obama.

    'Fast-Track' Trade Promotion Authority Hits a Speed Bump

    The main legislative hurdle to granting Obama Trade Promotion Authority (fast track) was supposed to be in the House of Representatives. This makes the defeat on a procedural vote in the Senate even more surprising. Vocal opposition came from the minority leader of the Senate (Reid) and one of the leaders of the left wing of the Democratic Party (Warren). However, the defeat had little to do with their protests.

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  • Beyond MFN, Pakistan and India have more to gain from integration.

    There is Still Great Trade Potential between India and Pakistan

    Is the time ripe for a new push for normalised trade between India and Pakistan? The foreign secretaries of both nations recently met in Islamabad. The two countries can expect formal talks to resume after a hiatus of six months. This came soon after the announcement by Khurram Dastgir, Pakistan’s Commerce Minister, that Pakistan may grant ‘non-discriminatory market access’ or Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India, a move that will get the two countries closer to striking a deal to fully liberalise trade between them.

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  • Ruffling feathers over chicken dinners at the TTIP talks.

    The US and EU Discuss "Regulatory Coherence" at TTIP Talks

    This week, in the shadow of the Pacific trade talks and the introduction of fast-track trade promotion authority, negotiators from the European Union and the United States are convening in New York City for what may be some animated chicken dinners.

    A main topic of the 9th round of talks on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) will be “regulatory coherence.”

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  • The TPP could be one of Obama's last successes before the next election.

    What is Going on with the TPP?

    The bill that would grant President Obama trade promotion authority (fast track) is in for markup today.  That refers to the process where the initial bill is modified, re-written and amended before it comes up for a vote.  Although the bipartisan sponsorship is encouraging, passage is still an uphill fight.

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  • The ISDS has been a sticking point among international trade partners.

    The Implications of the Investor-State Dispute Settlement in the TPP and TTIP

    Sometimes in politics, it is not the text that counts, but rather the context. Policies that are benign or even ignored by the electorate in one political constellation can suddenly fuel intense debate when there is a shift in the alignment of external forces. Think of Chancellor Merkel’s sudden decision to abandon nuclear power in Germany after the Fukushima reactor meltdown caused by the March 2011 earthquake in Japan. Nothing had changed about the safety of the German reactors themselves, but everything had changed about the broader context.

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