Trade and Investment Issues in the New Millennium Round
New Horizons in International Business series
Edited by Alan M. Rugman and Gavin Boyd
Chapter 11: The world trading system: collective management potentials
Gavin Boyd Study of the world trading system, as it operates under the auspices of, as well as outside of, the World Trade Organization (WTO), brings into view issues that set requirements for collective management, in the common interest, within regional contexts and at the global level. These issues are posed because of the largely ungoverned internationalization of market efﬁciencies and failures; imbalances in the spread of gains from foreign commerce; increasing disparities in the market strengths of ﬁrms; and shifts in the bargaining strengths and policy orientations of governments. Certain categories of issues relate to the WTO as a bargaining forum facilitating the negotiation of changes in economic openness, and as a regime in which the outcomes of interactions between governments depend in varying degrees on their observance of agreed although not fully internalized principles and rules. The principles and rules have been formulated as expressions of a spirit of cooperation, but the dominant bargaining processes are between the USA and the European Union, and with much adversarial legalism result in hard and precise agreements rather than afﬁrmations of commitments to trustful and adaptive cooperation. The structural and policy interdependencies of states are changing continually in the world economy, as ﬁrms competing for international market shares engage in foreign production and trade, and as governments make diverse attempts to increase structural competitiveness and to improve current accounts. Contrasts in cultures, institutions, and in corporate operations and in national policies have extensive effects, inviting analysis in terms of...
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