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El Sistema Generalizado de Preferencias: las razones de una frustración (Generalized System of Preferences: The Reasons for the Frustration)


  • Iván Martín

    (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)


Trade preferences towards developing countries do not seem to have been up to the expectations they created in the latter as a way to guarantee their access to markets in developed countries. In this article, I describe the main characteristics of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), review its economic effects and limitations and point out the grounds which caused its gradual loss of relevance in international trade relationships. Finally, I consider the causes of GSP failure and whether or not it is worthwhile to undertake its reform as a mechanism of unilateral trade liberalization alternative to the current regional integration projects (establishment of free trade areas and custom unions) proliferating in the last decade or multilateral liberalization within the World Trade Organization.

Suggested Citation

  • Iván Martín, 2003. "El Sistema Generalizado de Preferencias: las razones de una frustración (Generalized System of Preferences: The Reasons for the Frustration)," International Trade 0307007, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpit:0307007
    Note: Type of Document - Word; pages: 17 ; figures: included. The paper is in Spanish. It was published in "Boletín Económico de Información Comercial Española" (1999) nº 2605, pp. 27-36.

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. André Sapir & Sam Laird, 1987. "Tariff preference," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/8248, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    2. Grilli,Enzo R., 1993. "The European Community and the Developing Countries," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521385114, May.
    3. André Sapir & Rolf Langhammer, 1987. "Economic impact of generalized tariff preferences," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/8090, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
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    More about this item


    trade and development; trade preferences; Generalized System of Preferences; WTO;

    JEL classification:

    • F1 - International Economics - - Trade
    • F2 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business


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