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The Revival of Trade Regionalism: Determinants, Patterns and Implications


  • Agnes Ghibutiu



In recent years, members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) have increasingly resorted to preferential trade agreements (PTAs) as a means to further the market-opening and rule-making agenda. While PTAs are not new to the WTO, they are spreading at an unprecedented rate. Moreover, twenty-first century PTAs are qualitatively different from previous PTAs in their scope, composition, depth and consequences. This paper aims to identify the main factors behind the recent surge in regionalism and also highlight some potential implications for the multilateral trading system. According to our findings, if successfully concluded, the new PTAs will have important systemic implications. Due to further fragmentation of the world trading system and increasing transaction costs, the new regionalism would lead to scattering rather than levelling the playing field, which is economically undesirable for the whole trading community. However, the harmful effects could be mitigated via completing the multilateral Doha Round talks.

Suggested Citation

  • Agnes Ghibutiu, 2015. "The Revival of Trade Regionalism: Determinants, Patterns and Implications," Knowledge Horizons - Economics, Faculty of Finance, Banking and Accountancy Bucharest,"Dimitrie Cantemir" Christian University Bucharest, vol. 7(2), pages 9-14, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:khe:journl:v:7:y:2015:i:2:p:9-14

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