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How can we further capitalise on trade measures’ ability to address climate change mitigation? Is the overall impact of current climate response measures trade restrictive? Or, do these measures manage to achieve both environmental and economic goals? How can current governance of climate and trade be expanded or amended to make climate response measures more trade-friendly or to use trade more effectively toward achieving climate action goals? This paper explores these questions while putting forth several proposals for using trade tools to further progress toward climate change mitigation.
Gridlock in the Doha round of international trade negotiations in the WTO since 2001 has led developing countries to pursue different strategies to boost trade and investment among various partners. One of these mechanisms is the India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) forum created in 2003, which emerged in a context of the rise of emerging powers on the global scene and fits in their respective strategies of assertion and gaining status as global powers beyond their regions.
The IBSA forum has often been criticised for not delivering results and being rendered redundant by the rise of similar groupings like the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) forum. This paper questions the strategic aims of these southern-led cooperation mechanisms by looking at the forum’s activities related to the increase of south-south cooperation.
The author argues that beyond publicly stated aim of promoting south-south cooperation, the IBSA forum allows its members to pursue three underlying strategic aims:
Using novel data on patents, trade of equipment goods, and foreign direct investments and insights from the economic literature, this paper seeks to lay out the state of knowledge on the role of innovation and the diffusion of technologies in the greening of global value chains as well as some of the main policy issues. A special emphasis is put on developing countries – distinguishing emerging economies and least-developed countries – and on climate-mitigation technologies. Emerging economies are already reasonably well integrated in the global economy. As a consequence, technologies flow in through the imports of capital goods and local investments by multinational enterprises owning technologies. Pushing further technology transfer requires strengthening intellectual property rights, lowering barriers to trade and investments and improving technological absorptive capacities. In contrast, their role in innovation is limited. Standard tools of innovation policy – public research and development, public support to private research and development, better access to finance - should develop. But studies also suggest that governments should introduce more stringent environmental policies with proper enforcement at home to go beyond the adoption of foreign technologies. The situation of least developed countries is very different: they do not import green technologies and low barriers to trade and foreign direct investment or strict intellectual property rights are unlikely to trigger technology transfer. In these countries, the focus should be on building technological capacities.
Rising powers such as Brazil, China, India, South Africa, the Gulf states or Turkey have entered the development arena through their expanding relationships with low-income countries (LICs) . A widespread perception is that these countries are establishing new forms of engagement, mainly under a South–South cooperation framework.
One region where this engagement has been increasing more significantly is sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). New economic relationships represent new economic opportunities for African countries, at the same time as challenging existing relationships with traditional OECD partners.
This evidence report aims to understand and measure the engagement of rising powers in SSA. Specifically, it attempts to clarify the importance and nature of their engagement and the distinctiveness of their economic relationships with SSA, among the rising powers themselves and also in relation to traditional OECD donors, and to start analysing their likely development footprint arising from their economic engagement.
The findings of the paper do not suggest the South–South cooperation framework is irrelevant to development impact, but that, given the allocation of flows observed, this framework does not yet appear to be distinctive. It can be argued that this cooperation framework is not only about sector and country allocation of flows, but also about political engagement and cooperation, bilateral frameworks, and how aid and investment projects are selected and implemented.
Although Chinese corporations were relatively unknown in Latin America until a few years ago, their direct investments in the region have averaged about US$10 billion per year since 2010. Their presence and economic leverage have become very significant in many industries and countries of the region, but their motivation, strategy and procedures are not always well understood by Latin America’s governments, businesses and civil society. Similarly, Chinese companies still need to gain a better understanding of Latin America’s business environment and opportunities.
This working document was prepared to to contribute towards discussions regarding the future of Chinese foreign direct investment (FDI) in Latin America at the China - Latin America cross-council taskforce, held at the Summit on the Global Agenda, Abu Dhabi in November 2013.
The authors make the follwoing observations:
The authors propose that more attention should be paid to the strategies and practices of Chinese companies in Latin America and to the features that set them apart from others. Latin American governments should also assess how Chinese FDI can be treated as a new source of capital and knowledge with a view to raising productivity levels and enhancing the diversification of their economies.
Increased attention to the costs of corruption has engendered more and more reform efforts by governments, international donors, and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). The vast majority of these efforts focus on the public sector, such as through regulatory reform, disclosure, and the creation of new oversight bodies. Meanwhile, awareness has been growing that involve multiple stakeholders and especially private sector actions to addressing corruption.
This article argues that:
The government of Pakistan's 2011 Framework for Economic Growth seeks to place Pakistan on a sustained high economic growth path of 7 per cent per year through measures to reduce the cost of doing business, improve the investment climate, and strengthen institutions. According to the report, the present patterns in transport and trade logistics, an important part of the country’s economy, generate inefficiencies that are costing Pakistan's economy roughly 4-6 per cent of GDP per year. This report examines the poverty, social, and environmental aspects associated with trade and transport sector reforms aimed at increasing the freight transport sector's productivity to meet the Framework's goals.
Within Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) economies, small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) dominate manufacturing, accounting for the vast majority, over 98 percent, of manufacturing firms and about one-third of manufacturing output. As this report discusses, many LAC economie are using manufacturing extension services (MES) to help SME manufacturers overcome traditional market failures and compete with rapidly emerging manufacturers in Southeast Asia.
The report highlights the use of manufacturing extension services in developed countries. It explains the economic reasons for implementing such programmess and analyses the degree to which they have been successful in developed economies. It then applies the lessons learned from established MES programs to LAC economies. Four key themes emerge as central goals for LAC manufacturing extension services:
The report then identifies strong examples of these four MES practice areas across eight LAC countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Jamaica, Mexico, and Peru. It then offers a summary of the documented economic impact of MES programs, both in LAC and developed economies, and provides a set of policy recommendations to improve manufacturing extension services and programmes in LAC economies.
The continued difficulties of the World Trade Organization to achieve further multilateral trade liberalisation in the Doha Round negotiations have raised questions about its continued relevance.
This paper identifies and assesses the key developments in the Doha Round that have contributed to the present stalemate. It presents several options that the organization could consider for defining its future work program, given the new realities of global economic engagement, especially the emergence of global production networks. It then goes on to assess the possibility of including new disciplines covering areas that can help the growth of these drivers of global economic integration. Such an initiative could include three sets of issue: trade facilitation measures, an equitable investment regime, and effective disciplines for curbing non - tariff barriers.
2011 and 2012 witnessed a series of trade, financial and economic sanctions against Syria in the course of the crisis that has been hitting the country. The main characteristic of these sanctions is that they were imposed by Syria’s traditional trading partners (i.e. Arab countries and the EU).
These developments stimulated economic analysts and decision makers to revisit Syria’s trading directions, and look for strengthening trade relations with other partners who maintained their economic relations with Syria during the crisis.
This paper looks into the possibility of establishing a common market, that comprises of Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. These four countries form an extended geographically region that has important and multiple economic qualifications.Its potential bilateral trade is still largely unexploited.
such a market would afford the so-called economies of scale, which reduce the production costs and increase the competitive advantages of the region’s products
in the context of Syria's current circumstances, which may be unfavourable of speaking seriously about the common market, it is preferred to advance bilateral trade with each of the three countries. This would make common trade cooperation in favour of the proposed common market once circumstances allow approaching it seriously
it is advised on the short term to increase the exportation of cheese and pastry to Lebanese markets; and apples, tomatoes, cheese and pastry to Iraqi markets; as well as cotton lint to Iranian markets
it is also useful in the long run to plan for exporting cereals (if it makes sense) to Iraq, and citruses, particularly oranges, to Iran. Nevertheless, how to improve the competitive conditions for these two sectors in the two markets should be researched; the complementarities between the structures of Syrian production and the demand in the two markets are still not sufficient
in the framework of scientific research, reasons behind the regressive trend of terms of trade with Iran during the last decade should be addressed, and relevant resolutions and suggestions to hinder and stop this tendency should be investigated. In this sense, it is likely that this situation is driven by a lowering of the quality of some Syrian agricultural exported commodities, particularly in light of the results brought by the PCI
this paper has focused on the benefits that Syrian agricultural sector would gain from a presumable common market; nonetheless, it hasn’t covered the benefits that the other three countries would gain from such a common market. Therefore, there is a need to conduct future studies, preferably regional studies, on the gains that the other three countries would achieve, and consequently to generate a comprehensive image about the potential benefits for the region entirely from such a market
Analysis by the Overseas Development Institute suggests that over the next decade, global trade patterns will be transformed by climate change, international mitigation, and natural-resource scarcity, resulting in an inevitable shift over time to a low-carbon global economy. This report examines how these issues could play out in Cambodia, particularly focusing on the energy, tourism and manufacturing sectors. It has identified potential opportunities and threats to Cambodia’s competitiveness and growth, and possible policy responses.
In June 2003, the foreign ministers of India, Brazil and South Africa (IBSA) met in Brasilia to discuss forging closer ties between their nations. It was at this meeting that the India-Brazil-South Africa Dialogue Forum (IBSA Forum) was formally launched in order to foster closer engagement between the IBSA countries and to facilitate collaboration in multilateral governance fora and the development of common positions on a number of important issues.
A decade on from the establishment of the IBSA Forum, the general view is that these and other initiatives have had a ‘profoundly beneficial effect’ in terms of ‘improving trade among the three nations’ and that ‘intra-IBSA trade has grown significantly’. This brief seeks to test these claims by examining data on intra-IBSA trade flows to assess the performance of intra-IBSA trade over the past decade. In addition, the brief also takes a cursory look at the composition of intra-IBSA trade.
In particular, the brief shows that:
the value of intra-IBSA trade has grown significantly since the establishment of the IBSA Forum and has also increased as a share of the value of total IBSA trade
Intra-IBSA trade and the share of intra-IBSA trade in total IBSA trade were already growing rapidly in the decade preceding the establishment of the IBSA Forum, suggesting that intra-IBSA trade growth cannot be solely attributed to IBSA Forum initiatives
IBSA trade with China has actually grown faster than intra-IBSA trade over the past decade
growing shares of intra-IBSA trade and IBSA-China trade appear to be part of an ongoing shift in IBSA trade away from traditional trading partners in the North (European Union, United States) to emerging markets in the South
Intra-IBSA trade flows have become increasingly dominated by trade in mineral products (especially oil, coal and mineral ores) over the past decade, although significant intra-IBSA trade in certain agricultural and manufactured products still occurs
the composition of intra-IBSA trade is quite similar to the composition of total IBSA trade
What will the BRICS look like in a decade and what will the key priorities and achievements be? This document aims to provide a long-term vision for the BRICS. There are five prominent agendas of cooperation and collaboration that emerge from this vision. These themes are integral to the very idea of long-term engagement between the BRICS nations and provide a framework for accelerating momentum and increasing significance over the long term.
The document analyses the themes below in detail and provides recommendations specific to each one:
multilateral leverage: there are multiple formats for engagement and cooperation in order to leverage the BRICS identity at the global high table - BRICS countries can collectively position themselves by fostering intra-BRICS consensus on issues of significance
furthering market integration within BRICS, whether in the context of trade, foreign investments or capital markets, is a crucial step to ensure that the five countries become less dependent on cyclical trends in the global economy
intra-BRICS development platform: in the post-Washington Consensus era, developing economies within BRICS must set the new development agenda, which in turn must incorporate elements of inclusive growth, sustainable and equitable development. The institution of BRICS-specific benchmarks and standards, and collaboration on issues of common concern including the rapid pace of urbanisation and the healthcare needs of almost half the world's population represented by BRICS, must be prioritised
sharing of indigenous and development knowledge and innovation experiences across key sectors: coordination across sectors—such as information technology, energy generation, and high-end manufacturing could prove immensely beneficial for accelerating the BRICS development agenda
South Africa’s admission to the group was motivated by China and supported by Russia. Its accession to the BRICS generated much discussion about the country’s suitability to be part of the formation. One of the real issues raised is that South Africa does not measure up to the other BRIC economies in terms of population, trade levels and performance, and growth rates. A formation such as the BRICS is of value to South Africa only if the country’s strategic development interests (relating, for example, to agriculture) are to be on the agenda. South Africa faces particular challenges related to market access into the BRIC countries.
This book addresses a range of important issues related to the trade and investment relations among these countries. The performance of their agricultural sectors as well as trade amongst these countries is also examined. There is also focus on the relationship between BRICS and Africa, and what this means for South Africa’s trade relations with other African countries.
Please note this book is presented in two separate downloadable parts:
Part A chapters:
Part B chapters:
The emergence of new forms of South-South cooperation is reflected most notably in the growing importance of South-South trade and investment flows and the increasing prominence of various alliances and coalitions of large developing and emerging economies, such as the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) grouping and the India-Brazil-South Africa Dialogue Forum (IBSA Forum).
Borne out of frustration at the limited scope for participation available to their countries in global governance, in 2003, representatives from the governments of India, Brazil and South Africa met to discuss the possibility of forging closer ties between their nations. This led to the Brasilia Declaration and formalised IBSA cooperation through the creation of the IBSA Forum.
Ten years on, however, the commitment of the IBSA governments to the IBSA Forum appears to have waned somewhat. This paper aims to provide an examination of IBSA cooperation on trade-related issues, and, in particular to assess the degree to which the IBSA countries have been successful in using the IBSA Forum to:
The paper provides insight into the various opportunities and challenges faced by today’s emerging economies as they seek to cooperate with one another in order to integrate into the global economy on terms more favourable to their particular needs and circumstances.
The author concludes that:
What effect could trade with, and investment and aid from, the BRICS (Brazil, Russian Federation, India, China and South Africa) have on growth, employment and structural transformation in Africa? How can Africa maximize the benefits of its engagement with the BRICS, and minimize the risks? This study answers these two questions via a comparative analysis of BRICS’ practices in their cooperation with Africa.
It offers the following conclusions and policy recommendations:
Evidence on Demand has written a scoping review on biofuels – to evaluate the current literature on research related to eight sub-topics: energy efficiency and climate change potential, food security, land-use change, livelihoods, economic growth and jobs, technology, trade and policy. The review aims to identify the main policy issues as well as research gaps for future consideration. Research undertaken in the African context is the primary focus of the review but relevant work undertaken elsewhere is also referred to. There is also a PowerPoint presentation to go with the biofuels scoping review which provides a summary of the main areas of the report and its key findings. Download a PDF of the PowerPoint slides here.
Between now and 2035, global energy consumption is forecast to grow by 50 percent, and China and India together will account for more than half of this global growth. The scale of their energy consumption affects global supply and demand and, inherently, the price levels of various energy commodities - including natural gas - in the global marketplace.
As this report argues, the development of unconventional gas resources, especially shale gas, in China and India warrants close observation because of a host of potential economic and energy security benefits successful development may bring for the two growing economies.
However, a host of “above-ground” conditions are essential in fostering the successful development of these resources. North American experience suggets these conditions include access to shale gas resources on private lands, economically attractive natural gas prices, innovative operational and technological step changes that
combine hydraulic fracturing (fracking) with extended-reach lateral wells, an evolving under-standing of how shale formations react to stimulation, and availability of infrastructure to process and transport the gas.
Emerging investments into North American shale basins suggest that Chinese and Indian interests in exploring the potential of their unconventional gas resources, especially shale gas, are real. China and India would benefit from the availability of reliable data and processing capability. Additionally, both countries have yet to fully formulate policy frameworks concerning regulatory and physical infrastructure, pricing mechanisms, and environmental and resource management as well as issues associated with societal challenges that may accompany a large-scale development of their unconventional gas resources.
Over the past century, powerful food and beverage companies have enjoyed unprecedented commercial success. But these companies have grown prosperous while the millions who supply the land, labor and water need ed for their products face increased hardship. Now, a rapidly changing environment, affected c ommunities and an increasingly savvy consumer base are pushi ng the industry to rethink ‘business as usual’ .
In this report, produced as part of their "Behind the Brands" campaign, Oxfam assesses the social and environmental policies of the world’s ten largest food and beverage companies and calls on them to take the critical next steps to create a just food system. It highlights important policy gaps:
Important policy gaps include:
As the multilateral negotiations at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) are at a standstill, an increasing number of bilateral trade agreements are being negotiated. In Norway the multilateral negotiations are the responsibility of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, while it is the Ministry of Trade and Industry which deals with the bilateral agreements. Most of these agreements are entered into through the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), and therefore most of the existing agreements apply equally to Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. The explicit mandate of EFTA’s Free Trade Agreements (FTA) is to secure access to international markets and facilitate trade with partner countries.
However, the Norwegian Government has also stated that, while they see it as legitimate to give priority to Norwegian interests, they also strive to make sure that Norwegian policy (and not only development policy) benefits the inhabitants in poor nations and makes it easier for them to meet global challenges.
This tension – between Norwegian selfinterests on the one hand and the question of poverty reduction and social development for the world’s poor on the other - lies at the heart of this report. Nigeria is a very interesting case in this regard: While the country faces enormous challenges in terms of poverty and underdevelopment, it also represents a very interesting market for an increasingly globalised Norwegian export industry, particularly in the field of off-shore energy services.
Latin America has experienced substantial growth and transformation in small-scale mining, meaning it is often no longer small or artisanal, instead it is characterised by high informality and an increasing potential to generate conflicts.
This Brief presents the typical approaches used to address small-scale mining in the region, describingtheir shortcomings, while also identifying some policy measures that have proven to be more effective.
Featuring a stable democracy and dizzying economic growth, Brazil is fast on the way to acquiring global power status. The country is investing in enhanced multilateral and bilateral relationships as a means of leveraging trade and reducing vulnerability abroad and on the domestic front. This chapter demonstrates how Brazil has increasingly aligned its foreign policy with a ‘South–South Cooperation’ (SSC) agenda as a means of achieving these parallel objectives. But while Brazil’s trade activities have received attention, there has been comparatively less focus on the country’s aid policy and practice.
Moreover, there is surprisingly little discussion of how the country’s foreign policy pillars – trade and aid – are explicitly linked. The chapter demonstrates how Brazil’s emerging aid agenda is fundamentally informed by trade considerations. Over the past decade Brazil has positioned its foreign policy agenda in such a way as to re-shape the global terms of trade in its favour and decrease its dependency both internationally and domestically.
Brazil’s relatively modest development aid allocations are amplified by a wider effort to advance trade, foreign direct investment and technology transfer. Brazil seeks to expand to new markets for its products, services and investment, it anticipates that its South–South Development Cooperation (SSDC) stance will facilitate the extension of its influence in bilateral and multilateral arrangements, including the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations Security Council.
Wage levels are an issue of concern across the globe as individuals, companies and governments wrestle with how wages paid to workers relate to costs of living, corporate and national competitiveness, profitability and broader macroeconomic trends and challenges.
This report examines wages in the tea industry with a focus in three case study areas: Malawi, West Java (Indonesia) and Assam (India). It looks at hired labour on plantations and, in particular, tea pluckers.
Researchers found a number of deep rooted and complex factors keeping wages low. A key problem is that pay is set for the whole sector - there is no difference in pay from one plantation to the next - and that it is pegged to the legal minimum wage which is often well below the level needed for meet a family's basic needs. Other issues include the huge variation in the quality and take up of 'in-kind' benefits such as childcare or housing and the fact that workers, particularly women who make up the majority of the workforce, have little say in negotiations over pay.
Recommendations from the Caspian dialogues include the following: