Monday, September 14, 2009


IWS Documented News Service
Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach
School of Industrial & Labor Relations
-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies
Cornell University
16 East 34th Street, 4th floor
---------------------- Stuart Basefsky
New York, NY 10016
-------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau


REPORT on G20 TRADE and INVESTMENT MEASURES[1] [14 Septmeber 2009]
[full-text, 60 pages]

                [1] This Report is issued under the responsibility of the Director-General of the WTO, the Secretary-General of the OECD and the Secretary-General of UNCTAD.  It has no legal effect on the rights and obligations of member governments of the WTO, OECD, or UNCTAD.  The inclusion of any measure in this Report or in its Annexes implies no judgement by the WTO, OECD or UNCTAD Secretariats on whether or not such measure, or its intent, is protectionist in nature.  Moreover, nothing in this Report implies any judgement, either direct or indirect, as to the consistency of any measure referred to in the Report with the provisions of any WTO, OECD, or UNCTAD agreements or any provisions thereof.

During the period under review, we have not observed widespread resort to trade or investment restrictions as a reaction to the global financial and economic crisis.  We welcome the G20 governments' commitment to maintaining open trade and investment regimes and their ability to withstand domestic protectionist pressures.  In addition to active monetary and fiscal policies, international rules for trade and investment agreements have supported growth and restrained resort to beggar-thy-neighbour trade and investment policies.  Such rules and agreements are a source of opportunity in times of economic growth and a restraining influence in times of difficulty.  It is in this latter role that the rules are serving us particularly well right now.

            Nevertheless, there has been policy slippage since the global crisis began.  In some cases, G20 members have raised tariffs and introduced new non-tariff measures, and most of them have continued to use trade defence mechanisms.  Two have re-introduced agricultural export subsidies. These measures, along with reports of additional administrative obstacles being applied to imports, are creating "sand in the gears" of international trade that may retard the global recovery.  The fiscal and financial packages introduced to tackle the crisis clearly favour the restoration of trade growth globally, but some of them contain elements that favour domestic goods and services at the expenses of imports.  It is urgent that governments start planning a coordinated exit strategy that will eliminate these elements as soon as possible.

This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.

Stuart Basefsky                   
Director, IWS News Bureau                
Institute for Workplace Studies 
Cornell/ILR School                        
16 E. 34th Street, 4th Floor             
New York, NY 10016                        
Telephone: (607) 255-2703                
Fax: (607) 255-9641                       

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