Reassessing North-South Relations: The Case of North-South Preferential Trade Agreements

Reassessing North-South Relations: The Case of North-South Preferential Trade Agreements PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to provide a new framework for the (re)assessment of North-South relations, with a specific focus on North-South preferential trade agreements (PTAs); advance a new mechanism of how first-order, i.e., Southern countries’ first, North-South PTAs can affect the outcomes of second-order, i.e., Southern countries’ subsequent, North-South PTA negotiations; and reexamine the effects of North-South power asymmetries on the outcomes of North-South PTA negotiations. Design/methodology/approachThe paper focuses on how North-South power asymmetries affect the outcomes of North-South PTA negotiations. It introduces the concept of “first-order” and “second-order” North-South PTAs, to show that the “order” of an agreement can be a crucial factor in PTA negotiations. The claims of the paper are also supported by primary data obtained through the author’s personal interviews with EU and US trade officials and policy-makers. FindingsThe paper advances a new theoretical framework that takes a longer-term view on North-South trade relations, whereby against the backdrop of the proliferating PTAs, first-order North-South agreements can raise the bargaining powers of Southern countries during subsequent North-South PTA negotiations, with strong implication for both developed and developing countries. Research limitations/implicationsThe paper is largely theoretical. A systematic empirical study of North-South PTAs will be required to validate or refute the theoretical framework advanced in this paper. In addition, evidence obtained through interviews with trade officials and policy-makers can sometimes be descriptive and not necessarily imply causation. Originality/valueThe paper introduces a new variable, namely the “order” of an agreement, which affects the logic of North-South PTA negotiations. Hence, the paper sets out a new theoretical framework that allows for a more accurate assessment of North-South power asymmetries and their effects on the outcomes of North-South PTA negotiations. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of International Trade Law and Policy Emerald Publishing

Reassessing North-South Relations: The Case of North-South Preferential Trade Agreements

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
1477-0024
DOI
10.1108/JITLP-11-2015-0040
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to provide a new framework for the (re)assessment of North-South relations, with a specific focus on North-South preferential trade agreements (PTAs); advance a new mechanism of how first-order, i.e., Southern countries’ first, North-South PTAs can affect the outcomes of second-order, i.e., Southern countries’ subsequent, North-South PTA negotiations; and reexamine the effects of North-South power asymmetries on the outcomes of North-South PTA negotiations. Design/methodology/approachThe paper focuses on how North-South power asymmetries affect the outcomes of North-South PTA negotiations. It introduces the concept of “first-order” and “second-order” North-South PTAs, to show that the “order” of an agreement can be a crucial factor in PTA negotiations. The claims of the paper are also supported by primary data obtained through the author’s personal interviews with EU and US trade officials and policy-makers. FindingsThe paper advances a new theoretical framework that takes a longer-term view on North-South trade relations, whereby against the backdrop of the proliferating PTAs, first-order North-South agreements can raise the bargaining powers of Southern countries during subsequent North-South PTA negotiations, with strong implication for both developed and developing countries. Research limitations/implicationsThe paper is largely theoretical. A systematic empirical study of North-South PTAs will be required to validate or refute the theoretical framework advanced in this paper. In addition, evidence obtained through interviews with trade officials and policy-makers can sometimes be descriptive and not necessarily imply causation. Originality/valueThe paper introduces a new variable, namely the “order” of an agreement, which affects the logic of North-South PTA negotiations. Hence, the paper sets out a new theoretical framework that allows for a more accurate assessment of North-South power asymmetries and their effects on the outcomes of North-South PTA negotiations.

Journal

Journal of International Trade Law and PolicyEmerald Publishing

Published: Mar 21, 2016

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