The author of this article on Africa calls on Uganda and other African countries to oppose Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with the EU and to use tariffs and subsidies to stimulate economic growth. Highlighting the success of Korea and Taiwan after such a policy, the author argues that the African continent will not benefit from free trade encouraged by Europeans, but from fair trade. As trade agreements create favourable trading conditions, Companies in Member States have a greater incentive to negotiate in new markets. For example, when the United States entered into a free trade agreement with Australia in 2005, companies in both countries were able to export and import more goods without paying tariffs. The Office of the United States Trade Representative reports that in 2009, the United States exported $18.9 billion worth of goods to Australia, a 33 per cent increase over 2004. During this period, imports from Australia also increased by 3.5%. The United States has another multilateral regional trade agreement: the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR). This agreement with Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua eliminated tariffs on more than 80% of U.S. exports of non-textile goods. From time to time, you will hear about fast track trade laws, in which Congress would give the president the power to negotiate trade agreements. This law has not been passed and remains controversial. This report from the Corporate Europe Observatory and the Transnational Institute examines how law firms, arbitrators and financiers fuel the boom and investment arbitrage.
The international investment regime has included countries in agreements that impose high costs on governments if they implement policy changes that affect the profits of powerful companies. Even if policy change, such as environmental regulation, had a positive impact on the country`s citizens, the enormous legal costs to states could reduce the benefits. Not to mention that legal costs are borne by the taxpayers of these countries. The legal industry is particularly benefiting from this process boom by seeking every opportunity to sue governments with different tactics enumerated in the report. (Corporate Europe Observatory und Transnational Institute) As soon as the agreements go beyond the regional level, they need help. The World Trade Organization intervenes at this stage. This international body contributes to the negotiation and implementation of global trade agreements. In 1995, GATT became the World Trade Organization (WTO), which now has more than 140 member states.
The WTO controls four international trade agreements: the GATT, the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and the Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights and Trade Investment Agreement (TRIPS and TRIMS). The WTO is now the forum for members to negotiate the removal of trade barriers; The most recent forum is the Doha Development Round, launched in 2001. In the first two decades of the agreement, regional trade increased from about $290 billion in 1993 to more than $1 trillion in 2016. Critics disagree on the net impact on the United States.