Discussion Paper Details

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Title: Is the WTO Passť?

Author(s): Kyle Bagwell, Chad P. Bown and Robert W. Staiger

Publication Date: June 2015

Keyword(s): dispute settlement, preferential trade agreements, terms of trade, trade agreements and WTO

Programme Area(s): International Trade and Regional Economics

Abstract: The WTO has delivered policy outcomes that are very different from those likely to emerge out of the recent wave of preferential trade agreements (PTAs). Should economists see this as an efficient institutional hand-off, where the WTO has carried trade liberalization as far as it can manage, and is now passing the baton to PTAs to finish the job? We survey a growing economics literature on international trade agreements and argue on this basis that the WTO is not passť. Rather, and subject to some caveats, our survey of research to date suggests that the WTO warrants strong support while a more cautious view of PTAs seems appropriate.

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Bibliographic Reference

Bagwell, K, Bown, C and Staiger, R. 2015. 'Is the WTO Passť?'. London, Centre for Economic Policy Research.