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Ainsley Elbra and Richard Eccleston

Blatant corporate tax avoidance has attracted the ire of politicians, citizens and consumers the world over in recent years. Since the financial crisis of 2008, international taxation has become a mainstream political issue championed by social justice campaigners and the progressive press the world over. Globally, governments and intergovernmental organisations have announced a range of reforms designed to ensure that MNCs pay their ‘fair share’ of tax, while some of the world’s most powerful and profitable firms have been subjected to multibillion-dollar fines.

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Andrew T.H. Tan

The centre of the global economy today resides in Asia, not Europe or North America. According to the International Monetary Fund, Asia in 2016 accounted for 40 per cent of global GDP (Lagarde 2016). As Asia also accounts for much of global economic growth in recent years, developments in the region are therefore central to the global economic outlook and for formulating policies around the world (IMF 2015: 1). Asia’s remarkable economic rise is led by China, which had a GDP of around US$11.4 trillion in 2016, making it the second largest economy in the world after the United States. Despite economic stagnation since the 1990s, Japan in 2016 remained the world’s third largest economy, with a GDP of about US$4.7 trillion. Other significant economic powerhouses in Asia include India and South Korea (IMF 2016). The trend is quite clear: Asia is on course to regain the dominant economic position it held before the Industrial Revolution in Europe (ADB n.d.). The maintenance of stability in Asia has therefore become pivotal to global stability; conversely, regional instability will have deep, global consequences. Since the surrender of Japan in 1945 at the end of the Second World War, the United States has been deeply engaged in Asia, and has maintained a form of hegemony over the region, though its failure in the Vietnam War demonstrated the limits of its dominance. The US role has been mostly seen as positive, at least to its allies and the non-communist states in Asia, as it has, through its hubs and spokes system of alliances and military presence, exercised sufficient power to maintain general stability in the region. In turn, this has facilitated Asia’s economic rise (Beeson 2011).

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Edited by Aynsley Kellow and Hannah Murphy-Gregory

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R. J. Ferguson

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Edited by Hans-Joachim Giessmann, Roger Mac Ginty, Beatrix Austin and Christine Seifert

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Nicholas Perdikis and Laurie Perdikis

The chapter begins with a brief historical overview of the principal catalysts, both economic and political for European economic integration, before moving on to discuss the theoretical foundations of economic integration and the economic and trade implications of the Treaty of Rome. The chapter then proceeds to outline the development of the EU’s trade policy and how this was affected by its deepening and widening, as well as the impact international factors had on that process. The principal areas of EU trade policy are also covered – in particular its multilateral aspects, its bilateral and plurilateral arrangements and its unilateral policy covering the Generalised Scheme of Preferences or GSP. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the future direction and re-calibration of the EU’s trade policy towards relationships with Far Eastern economies via its ‘Trade for All’ policy document.

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Hans J. Giessmann and Roger Mac Ginty

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Sangeeta Khorana and María García

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Robin Wilson

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R. J. Ferguson

This book provides a critical overview of China’s engagement with Eurasia, focusing on 21st-century challenges that will need careful management over coming decades. China’s emerging role goes well beyond the standard ‘geopolitics’ of the Eurasian ‘chess board’. China is seeking to evolve new agendas and relationships that avoid the dilemma posed by its slowing economy and potential containment by the United States. This will be a challenging task given divergent perceptions of global issues by the EU, Russia and China, and the changing Eurasian balance of power only partly moderated by bilateral dialogues and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Here the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) will be a necessary but complex task, forcing China into intensified engagement with conflict prone regions across Eurasia, thereby posing several environmental, developmental and strategic dilemmas. PRC has a tight timeframe to establish itself as an essential arbiter in Eurasian integrative processes and emerge as a sustainable global power.