10 Apr 2021

Most Important Trade Agreements

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The resulting confidence has given way to commercial progress on different fronts. And it allowed the United States to act as a stable anchor in the international financial system, first in the Mexican peso crisis of 1995, and then in the Asian financial crisis of 1997-8, which helped to support accelerated stimulus and maintain the commitment to open trading systems. As soon as the agreements go beyond the regional level, they need help. The World Trade Organization intervenes at this stage. This international body contributes to the negotiation and implementation of global trade agreements. The result was inequality. At times, the United States has taken the opportunity to take on ambitious leadership positions, concluding the Uruguay Round, NAFTA and global agreements in telecommunications, financial services and information technology, creating the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTA), increasing the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC), promoting the international financial rescue of Mexico and then East Asia. , and negotiating the U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the bilateral trade agreement between the United States and Vietnam. , and mediation of China`s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO). But sometimes polarization in one`s own country has led to paralysis abroad, notably with the failure of the WTO negotiations in Seattle and the symbolic end of the rapid defeat in 1997.

And in cases where U.S. domestic policy has obstructed leadership, rivals were happy to participate, especially the European Union (EU) on the WTO and Japan in Asia. Another key element of the WTO`s success is its demand for transparency. WTO members are required to publish their trade rules and follow a system that allows external parties to verify and assess all administrative decisions and their impact on trade rules. If a WTO nation changes its trade policy, these changes must be notified to the WTO. The Clinton administration has also made a major breakthrough in trade policy with China, after several years of rocky relations on the security and trade front. The early years were marked by a series of high-level trade disputes that culminated in a pioneering agreement on intellectual property, signed under penalty of sanctions. Although the government identified WTO membership early on as one of the few levers available to the United States to influence China`s development and advance the rule of law, negotiations only seriously intensified when Chinese leaders, in particular Prime Minister Zhu Rongji, accepted WTO membership as a key complement to the internal reform agenda and decided that the United States would be the main mediator. Trade unions and environmentalists in rich countries have been the most active in seeking labour and environmental standards. The danger is that the application of such standards could simply be an excuse for protectionist protectionism in rich countries, which would harm workers in poor countries.

In fact, people in poor, capitalist or working-class countries were extremely hostile to the imposition of such standards. For example, the 1999 WTO meeting in Seattle was partially unsuccessful because developing countries opposed the Clinton administration`s attempt to include labour standards in multilateral agreements. The following video explains and compares the different types of trade agreements: the best outcome of trade negotiations is a multilateral agreement that encompasses all major trading countries.