The Preferential Liberalization of Trade in Services
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The Preferential Liberalization of Trade in Services Comparative Regionalism

Comparative Regionalism

Edited by Pierre Sauvé and Anirudh Shingal

The book’s core focus is on comparative scholarship, directing attention to the substantive features of services PTAs around the globe and exploring the iterative nature of rule-making and market opening in a still nascent field of trade diplomacy. It advances a number of ideas on how to multilateralize PTA advances in services and takes stock of the likely impact on the WTO system of ongoing attempts at crafting a plurilateral agreement on trade in services.
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Chapter 4: Innovating regionalism: the Americas

Sherry Stephenson and Maryse Robert

Extract

More than any other region in the world, the Americas was the first to embrace regionalism wholeheartedly and has remained at the forefront in developing innovative approaches to the treatment of services trade. In the mid-1980s and early 1990s, numerous countries in the Americas undertook reforms aimed at dismantling protectionist measures in their own markets and at promoting a more open and dynamic pattern of integration into the world economy. In several countries, trade in services and investment rulemaking were at the forefront of the reforms being undertaken. It was felt that easing restrictions on foreign investment could foster economic growth and that removing barriers to trade in services could lead to lower prices, improved quality and greater variety of both goods and services, as well as stimulate exports.

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