IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Multilateralism and Regionalism in the South Pacific: World Trade Organization and Regional Fora as Complementary Institutions for Trade Facilitation


  • Richard Pomfret


As World Trade Organization (WTO) membership becomes almost universal, the Pacific island countries stand out as the largest group of outsiders. As the islands seek to replace reliance on preferential trading arrangements by competitive exports, market access and trade facilitation have become key policy concerns. In this context, WTO membership and regional or bilateral trade agreements are complementary institutions for increasing the potential success of new exports. The WTO sets out agreed principles for market access, and membership includes a dispute resolution process that provides redress against unjustified obstacles to exports, whilst trade facilitation in the sense of overcoming particular cost-raising obstacles to trade is better delivered by regional and bilateral agreements. The argument is supported by evidence from Pacific and other small island economies.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Pomfret, 2016. "Multilateralism and Regionalism in the South Pacific: World Trade Organization and Regional Fora as Complementary Institutions for Trade Facilitation," Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies 201632, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  • Handle: RePEc:een:appswp:201632

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Pomfret, Richard, 2001. "The Economics of Regional Trading Arrangements," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199248872.
    2. repec:wsi:wsbook:9816 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Pacific islands; trade facilitation; WTO;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:een:appswp:201632. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sung Lee). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.