Jorge Andrade da Silva, Lucian Cernat, 09 February 2012

Natural disasters often hit developing countries hardest. To add to the devastating death toll, trade and development can be knocked off course. This column suggests that exports of small developing countries fall by nearly a quarter, and that this effect can be felt for up to three years. Exports of larger developing countries, on the other hand, are not significantly affected.

Chad Bown, 29 August 2011

While the Great Recession has not led to a massive global resort to protectionism, governments have nevertheless been active with their trade policy during the crisis. This column explores how governments adjusted the scale and composition of their temporary trade barriers – antidumping, safeguard, and countervailing-duty policies –during the crisis, as well as how policy use fits recent historical context and creates the need for post-crisis policy reform.

Robert Johnson, Guillermo Noguera, 07 June 2011

Roughly two-thirds of international trade is in intermediate goods. As a result, measures of trade flows that tally the gross value of goods at each border crossing lead to a distorted view of world trade. Using a value-added measure, this column finds that the controversial US-China imbalance is in fact around 40% smaller than many people think.

Uri Dadush, Shimelse Ali, Rachel Odell, 07 June 2011

The limited resort to protectionism during the financial crisis is often attributed to the WTO or to sensible macroeconomic policy. This column argues that there is more to the story. The combination of national laws, regional agreements, and powerful interest groups has worked to stop protectionism in its tracks.

Peter Sutherland, 27 May 2011

Peter Sutherland talks to Viv Davies about the final report of the high-level trade experts group, published this week, on 'World Trade and the Doha Round'. The report traces the imminent failure of the Doha Round back to what the authors consider to be "a deficit of political leadership"; they also make the case for why the WTO matters. The interview was recorded in London on 24 May 2011. [Also read the transcript.]

Michael Bordo, Peter Rousseau, 26 May 2011

How interconnected are finance, trade, and economic growth? This column looks to the past in search of an answer. Examining economies that traded across the Atlantic, it finds that finance and trade reinforced one another between 1880 and 1914 but these links were absent in the post-war period. Financial development has been strongly related to growth throughout the last 130 years, whereas trade had a direct effect on growth only after 1945.

Filippo di Mauro, Benjamin Mandel, 05 May 2011

Has the global crisis changed international trade forever? This column presents a Q&A on global trade taken from a new eBook from the European Central Bank: “Recovery and Beyond”.

Ejaz Ghani, Arti Grover Goswami, Homi Kharas, 04 May 2011

Services have long been the main source of growth in rich countries. This column argues that services are now the main source of growth in poor countries as well. It presents evidence that services may provide the easiest and fastest route out of poverty for many poor countries.

Viv Davies, 27 April 2011

The Doha Development Agenda (DDA) has made very little progress in ten years. If it fails to be completed, the impact on world trade and the global economy could potentially be very damaging, with serious implications for the credibility and future of the WTO. Many commentators suggest that the Doha Round is dying of political neglect and that its revival requires the immediate intervention and committed support of G20 leaders; others argue that gaining such support at this very late stage is unrealistic. CEPR held a high-level trade seminar in London on 14th April to discuss the issue.

Viv Davies, 27 April 2011

The Doha Development Agenda (DDA) has made very little progress in ten years. If it fails to be completed, the impact on world trade and the global economy could potentially be very damaging, with serious implications for the credibility and future of the WTO. Many commentators suggest that the Doha Round is dying of political neglect and that its revival requires the immediate intervention and committed support of G20 leaders; others argue that gaining such support at this very late stage is unrealistic. CEPR held a high-level trade seminar in London on 14th April to discuss the issue.

Theresa Carpenter, Andreas Lendle, 25 March 2011

How much of world trade is preferential? This column uses tariff data covering around 90% of world trade in 2008 to show that only 16.3% of world trade is eligible for preferences. It shows that preferences reduce the global trade-weighted tariff from 3% to 2%.

Lucian Cernat, Marlene Madsen, 23 March 2011

Compared to recent headline-grabbing events, dealing with “behind-the-border barriers” and keeping protectionist tendencies at bay might seem to be small potatoes. This column argues that the “murky protectionism” that affects €100 billion of trade will have profound implications for Europe and the rest of the world, and as such is worthy of attention.

Carmen Reinhart, Vincent Reinhart, 25 February 2011

Sudden stops and reversals in capital flows are the stuff of policymakers’ nightmares. This column builds on the last 20 years of research and argues that the capital-inflow dilemma is not an external problem – it is an eternal one.

Peter Sutherland, 04 February 2011

Peter Sutherland, former director general of the World Trade Organization, talks to Viv Davies about the recently published interim report on ‘The Doha Round: Setting a deadline, defining a final deal’. He explains why Doha has stalled and presents the case for its immediate completion. He maintains it is crucial that governments now commit to concluding Doha by the end of 2011 or else the round is doomed and all that has been achieved will be lost, with disastrous consequences for world trade. The interview was recorded by telephone on 1 February 2011. [Also read the transcript]

Nicolas Véron, 19 January 2011

With emerging and oil-rich economies increasingly investing in European companies, some have proposed modifying the EU’s stance on foreign investment for reasons of geopolitical security. But this often is a guise for protecting narrow political interests, particularly as unemployment rises. This column calls for a clear and consistent legal framework to avoid the dangerous extremes of complete closure and complete, unchecked openness.

Marcos Chamon, Kai Liu, Eswar Prasad, 18 January 2011

In an effort to reduce its sizeable current-account surplus, the Chinese government has made it a priority to “rebalance” growth in China by stoking private consumption. This column examines the determinants of the high household saving rate that keeps Chinese consumption so low.

Brad McDonald, Christian Henn, 22 December 2010

The independent Global Trade Alert has identified hundreds of protectionist measures since its launch in 2008. This column argues that the protectionist measures are associated with substantial changes in bilateral trade flows. It adds that border measures and behind-the-border measures, including bailouts and subsidies, contribute equally to an annual aggregate trade distortion of at least $35 billion.

Wolfgang Keller, Ben Li, Carol Shiue, 19 December 2010

The growing power of Chinese trade is almost daily news. This column argues that China’s role in world trade today is shaped in part by the post-1978 market reforms and in part by the Western invasion in the 19th century. Following the Opium Wars, China was forced to open its borders, providing the bedrock of technology and infrastructure that supported its future growth.

Raphael Auer, 10 December 2010

Do skill-intensive imports from rich nations reduce skill accumulation in emerging economies? This column presents new evidence from 41 emerging economies to suggest that being close to the global supply of skilled labour decreases domestic human capital. A one-standard deviation higher geographic proximity to skilled labour is associated with a 12% lower average education length of the country’s workforce. This may have profound consequences for the ability of poorer nations to catch up with richer ones.

Andreas Fuchs, Nils-Hendrik Klann, 10 November 2010

This year’s Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Liu Xiaobo, the human rights activist who is currently a prisoner in China. Beijing has condemned the decision, saying it will harm relations with Norway. This column argues this threat should be taken seriously. It shows that receiving the Dalai Lama, who is perceived as a threat by the Chinese, can decrease exports to China by as much as 8.1%.

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