Report

Description

This publication examines international trade and the role of the G20.

Key findings:

  • If one of the main roles of the G20 is to be a circuit breaker in overcoming intractable international economic issues, multilateral trade liberalisation is a prime candidate for the G20’s attention.
  • The record of the G20’s standstill on protection is mixed, particularly when it comes to the application of non-tariff barriers. But the G20’s record in helping to advance the conclusion of the Doha Round is poor. This has damaged the G20’s credibility on trade policy.
  • Countries are withdrawing from ambitious attempts to open world markets in favour of pursuing preferential trade arrangements, particularly mega-regional agreements. This should be a concern for the G20.
  • Trade policy needs to adapt to the reality that value chains are increasingly driving international trade. Goods are now made ‘in the world’.
  • There are a number of things the G20 could do to support the multilateral trading system, including: putting trade at the heart of efforts to deliver economic and employment growth; extend and strengthen the standstill on protection; harvest what can be saved from the Doha Round; help bring the WTO trade policy agenda into the 21st century; advance plurilateral agreements; and seek to progressively align the modalities in the proposed mega trade agreements.

Contributors include Mike Callaghan AM, Peter Gallagher, John Ravenhill, Mark Thirlwell and Brett Williams.

Publication Details
Published year only: 
2013
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