The ongoing financial crisis has increased the price tag of failing world trade negotiations. The failure of the last major round of trade talks in July 2008 was estimated to have missed the opportunity to generate gains of $50 to $70 billion for the global economy.
Additional losses are predicted if crisis-stricken economies, ranging from Brazil to India and from Australia to Singapore, raise tariffs. Such increases are possible because these countries are applying tariffs that are much lower (8% on average, but much more on many products) than the tariff ceilings they agreed to respect in previous WTO negotiations. Covering 30% of world trade, just a dozen countries are large enough to generate chaos in the whole world trading system if they increase their tariffs.
But are assessments of the rise in protectionism overblown? How do we rein in existing attempts at protectionism? And how can we be prepared in the future should protectionism rise?
Patrick Messerlin argues that world leaders need to adopt greater realism on industrial tariffs, more transparency on agricultural liberalization, great boldness on service liberalization and more responsibility for their own unilateral trade liberalization. Following the talks in London, Messerlin calls on G20 leaders to focus on making tangible progress in the Doha negotiations before the end of this year.
Join him at this lunch seminar to discuss these timely and pertinent issues.
Guest speaker: Patrick Messerlin, Sciences Po
Limited number of seats available.
RSVP by 20 April to firstname.lastname@example.org
A light lunch will be served.