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The Unabated Proliferation of Preferential Trade Agreements. The Case of EU and Japan


  • Agnes Ghibutiu


  • Iulia Monica Oehler-Sincai

    () ("Dimitrie Cantemir" Christian University)


The steady spread of preferential trade agreements is not a new phenomenon in the multilateral trading system. Striking is, however, the outstanding dynamics of the new bilateral and regional initiatives among the traditional trading powers - the EU, U.S. and Japan - in the most recent period. Our paper aims to address these new deals, as illustrated by the current negotiations for a deep and comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the EU and Japan launched in March 2013. It sheds light on the main factors behind the unabated march towards FTAs and reveals some of its effects on both bilateral trade relations and the multilateral trading system. It argues that the fast move towards FTAs should be seen as a means of rapid market opening within the broader context of reforming the very fundamentals of the major trading powers’ economic and trade policies in response to the consequences of the financial crisis.

Suggested Citation

  • Agnes Ghibutiu & Iulia Monica Oehler-Sincai, 2013. "The Unabated Proliferation of Preferential Trade Agreements. The Case of EU and Japan," Knowledge Horizons - Economics, Faculty of Finance, Banking and Accountancy Bucharest,"Dimitrie Cantemir" Christian University Bucharest, vol. 5(3), pages 27-31, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:khe:journl:v:5:y:2013:i:3:p:27-31

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    More about this item


    Trade policy; trade negotiations; FTA; EU; Japan; multilateral trading system;

    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • O52 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Europe
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East


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