Trade Liberalization, Competition and the WTO
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Trade Liberalization, Competition and the WTO

Edited by Chris Milner and Robert Read

The prospective WTO Millennium Round of negotiations will highlight critical economic issues regarding the application and implementation of the WTO rules to international trade in goods and services. In this book, a distinguished group of academic experts considers the agenda and areas of interest for the next Round in light of Seattle, the functions of the WTO and competition policy issues arising from trade liberalization.
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Chapter 2: Multilateral Market Access Negotiations in Goods and Services

Sam Laird


Sam Laird* Protection in goods and services has changed markedly in recent years but, in spite of the free trade hype by some opponents of globalization, there is still substantial protection in developed and developing countries and this is loaded against developing countries (section 1). Under the WTO Agreements, many non-tariff measures in agriculture were converted to tariffs (tariffied) and quantitative restrictions on trade in textiles and clothing are being eliminated, making tariffs the binding constraint in key goods sectors. Tariff peaks and escalation will need to be addressed in conventional market access negotiations. These negotiations will also be the principal means for addressing other barriers in the agricultural sector as well as in services. Much intervention in trade or production in goods and services is regulated by WTO rules and any further negotiated reductions in the incidence of such measures would come under negotiations on such rules. While it is difficult to quantify the effects of existing protection and other forms of sectoral intervention, particularly in the services sector, it is possible to draw some conclusions about a welfare-enhancing liberalization strategy for the new negotiations (sections 4, 5 and 6). 1. LEVELS AND PATTERNS OF TARIFF PROTECTION Overall, most favoured nation (MFN) bound tariffs at the end of the implementation of the Uruguay Round will be some 6.5 per cent across all countries and products (Table 2.1), while applied rates will be some 4.3 per cent. In general, developing countries’ bound rates are...

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