German Marshall Fund and
The Doha Round: A Global Insurance Policy – Preventing Protectionism in
Turbulent Economic Times
As the aftershocks of the financial crisis begin to be felt in the real
economy, there is a risk of a resort to trade protectionism. Today, how
confident can we be that the WTO could withstand a strong move towards protectionism?
In such a situation, a Doha Round agreement takes on a whole new
significance.Large differences between applied and bound tariff rates in the
manufacturing and agriculture sectors mean that many WTO member countries could
increase their tariffs at anytime without breaking any of their current WTO
commitments. The benefits of a Doha agreement should therefore be measured not
solely by the economic gains to be had from further reductions in applied
tariffs but also by the stability that reductions in bound rates would provide
to volatile world markets.
David Laborde, International Food Policy Research Institute, Patrick
Messerlin, Groupe d’Economie Mondiale de Science Po and Chairman of ECIPE’s
Advisory Board, Joe Guinan, The German Marshall Fund of the U.S.
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