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Free Trade

The Central American agricultural sector in the run-up to negotiations for the EAA with the European Union :

potential conflicts and scenarios
Publisher: 
EUISS
Volume, number, page: 
111 p.
Category: 
Abstract: 
The present study aims to describe the current context, identify the potential points of conflict and determine some of the possible scenarios within the setting and as a result of the negotiation of an Economic Association Agreement (EAA) between the European Union (EU) and Central America (CA), in the specific case of the farming sector. The study is structured around the following set of specific objectives: Describe the relations between the European Union and Central America in terms of agriculture. Identify the main interests of the EU and CA farming sectors in the negotiations
for an Economic Association Agreement. Identify potential ‘winning’ and ‘losing’ products in Central American agricultural as a result of this economic association agreement. The study is organized into four parts: the first part (sections II, III and IV) describe the background to the EAA
negotiations and the overall importance of the farming sector for both blocks; in the next part (sections V and VI), we present in separate form the most important commercial farming interests for each block; in the third part (VII and VIII), the information from the previous sections is compared in order to locate the potential points of conflict and generate a set of hypothetical scenarios for the potential outcome of the negotiations; and finally, in the fourth part (IX), we provide a set of final comments that look to summarize the study’s findings.

Social Standards in Bilateral and Regional Trade and Investment Agreements

Instruments, Enforcement, and Policy Options for Trade Unions
Publisher: 
FES
City: 
Geneva
Volume, number, page: 
n.16, pp.
Category: 
Abstract: 
Despite efforts of the ILO, no viable multilateral labor rights regime has been established. At the same time, an increasingly global economy requires such regimes in order to prevent ruinous competition between countries competing in similar product markets on the basis of a similar set of production factors. Particularly if cheap labor is one of these factors, systematic violations of labor rights may be used as source of competitive advantages, even if such advantages are marginal. So-called ‘core labor rights’ can enable domestic actors to fight for improved standards.
Unilateral labor rights provisions do exist in the Generalized System of Preferences of the United States and the European Union, and have been applied with some success. However, attempts of the international labor movement to establish more enforceable multilateral labor rights provisions at the WTO have failed so far. Civil society actors have therefore stepped up their efforts to push individual transnational
enterprises to adopt so-called voluntary codes of conduct, with mixed (and limited) success.
A more recent strategy is the inclusion of labor rights provisions in bilateral or regional trade and investment agreements. With the multilateral trade process stalling, the governments of developed countries are moving toward bilateral and regional negotiations, where they have more bargaining power. Also, the value of unilateral trade preference schemes has decreased due to multilateral liberalization. Labor rights provisions in bilateral or regional agreements may thus be seen as a promis-ing strategy for improving compliance regarding core labor rights.
Specific labor rights provisions have been included in several agreements negotiated by the U.S., and more general provisions are to be found in agreements of the EU. Most U.S. provisions are effectively limited to the commitment of parties to enforce domestic labor law. However, there are notable exceptions in the agreements with Cambodia and Jordan, which could serve as examples for future labor rights provisions. In EU bilateral agreements, the focus is clearly on general human rights, development issues, technical cooperation and political dialogue, rather than on specific and enforceable labor rights provisions.
In addition to the problematic subordination of labor rights decisions to foreign policy objectives, there are two main problems for even the strongest labor rights provisions: First, their effective enforcement relies on strong local actors; yet it is the absence or weakness of such actors that makes external pressure necessary in the first place. Second, labor relations are among the most political domestic institutions, and resistance to external pressure can be expected not just in cases of systematic violations of core labor rights.

Realpolitik or reinforcement of the EUs normative power

A Case Study on the EUs relations with the CELAC
Publisher: 
Linköping University
City: 
Linköping
Volume, number, page: 
96 p.
Category: 
Abstract: 
This research aims to understand the nature and underlying motives of the EU’s relations with the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC). The frequently claimed normative role of the EU will be examined in the context of the EUCELAC summit relations, and the cases should be outlined that cause a switch to Realpolitik behavior. Thereby, the EU’s engagement in regional integration and interregional cooperation will be illustrated and EU-CELAC cooperation areas concerning the fight against poverty and social inequality, the consolidation of good governance and the promotion of peace, and lastly, the regional integration, trade, and economic cooperation are analyzed to reach an understanding of their normative or Realpolitik content. The research illustrates the ways of understanding the EU’s normative behavior and power, and the nature of the cooperation between the EU and the CELAC, whereby it should be shown that the EU acts according to normative consideration and only in few exceptions turns towards Realpolitik behavior.

Quantitative assessment of a free trade agreement between MERCOSUR and the European Union

Publisher: 
ECLAC
City: 
Santiago
Volume, number, page: 
74 p.
Considered Countries: 
Abstract: 
The main purpose of this paper is to analyse the direct and indirect impacts of an FTA (free trade agreement) between MERCOSUR and the
EU (European Union). MERCOSUR is a regional trade agreement between Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay, created in 1991. Venezuela signed a membership agreement in 2006, but it has not yet been ratified by the Brazilian and Paraguayan parliaments. In our study, we consider that Venezuela is not part of MERCOSUR. The aim of this regional treaty is to support free trade and the free movement of goods, people and currency. By European Union, we mean the 27 countries which are linked by their belonging to the European Communities

European and Chinese trade competition in third markets :

the case of Latin America
Publisher: 
BRUEGEL
City: 
Brussels
Volume, number, page: 
n.6, pp.1-15.
Category: 
Considered Countries: 
Abstract: 
China’s increasingly important role in the global economy has transformed the nature of global competition and reshaped international trade.
Meanwhile, the European Union has long been the most important power in global trade and continues to run a very large trade surplus. We
address whether China is an increasingly relevant competitor for Europe in third markets, and in particular in Latin America. More specifi cally, we
empirically estimate the elasticity of substitution between European exports and Chinese exports to Latin American economies (ie how their exports to Latin America respond to the changes in relative exporting prices).

Analysis of the upcoming modernisation of the trade pillar of the European Union- Mexico Global Agreement

City: 
Bruselas
Volume, number, page: 
66 p.
Considered Countries: 
Abstract: 
The 1997 Global Agreement between the EC and its Member States and Mexico, together with the set of decisions taken in its framework, has been effective, and thus modifications of the agreement are mainly motivated by changes in the global landscape since it was first enacted. Therefore, broad considerations on how the European Union (EU) trade policy is shaped are extremely relevant for the upcoming negotiations with Mexico. In this context, the needs and expectations, both from the EU and Mexico, regarding any further agreements are examined, focusing in particular on areas beyond trade in goods and services such as procurement, investment, and regulatory cooperation. It is argued that the 'old' Association Agreements should be taken as models for any modifications, given their emphasis on EU-specific issues and their ability to accommodate the needs of Mexico in any deepened agreement.

Analysis of the prospects for updating the trade pillar of the European Union-Chile Association Agreement

City: 
Brussels
Volume, number, page: 
60 p.
Considered Countries: 
Abstract: 
The perception of the present state of trade relations with Chile is obscured by a lack of adequate understanding of its legal framework as well as of the policy behind it. This study attempts to clarify the present state of and future prospects for trade between the EU and Chile through an examination of previous agreements and the EU’s new approach to trade liberalisation. The authors agree with the large consensus existing on both the EU and Chilean sides regarding the efficacy of the Association Agreement, but note that any extension of an agreement with Chile should capture the spirit of older EU agreements rather than simply following the ‘NAFTA route’. The study also includes a comparative analysis
between the EU-Chile agreement and current trade agreements being negotiated by the EU and Chile with third countries.

The free trade agreement between the European Union and Mexico

impact on trade and foreign direct investment
Publisher: 
Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
City: 
Santiago
Volume, number, page: 
43:1, pp.115-135
Abstract: 
The Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and Mexico (FTA EU-MX) has contributed to reactivate the economic relations between them since they have implemented the global agreement that came into effect in the year 2000 and that has permitted that the economic and trade relations between both parties have strengthened.
However, it will be shown that there does exist the need to adapt the FTA EU-MX to the actual national, regional and international circumstances and to promote changes in order to gain more benefits for Mexico and its population.

An analysis of Central America and Eastern Europe Revealed Comparative Advantages

Publisher: 
IEECA Society
City: 
Minneapolis
Volume, number, page: 
1:1, pp.1-12
Abstract: 
The present study applies the revealed comparative advantages through the Balassa Index to determine the comparative advantages, disadvantages, and intra-product commerce tendencies between Central America and Eastern Europe with the purpose of determining the possibility of a free trade agreement for Central America. The approach of the study is through the connection between the European Economic Union and the Central American Common market, which shares a common background and relates them to research of Bela Balassa (1965) to determine how commerce between Central America and Eastern Europe has performed and the possibilities of growth that this commerce has through a free trade agreement. The study demonstrates the importance of analyzing competitive advantages. This paper presents the difference in competitive advantage between Eastern Europe and Central American establishing the benefits when negotiating a free trade agreement between both economic blocks. Therefore, analyzing and negotiating between products of competitive advantages may lead to a more sustainable economic growth.

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