Harmonization of International Legal Structure for Fostering Professional Services: Lessons from Early U.S. Federal-State Relations
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
September 11, 2009
Cardozo Journal of International and Comparative Law (JICL), Vol. 18, 2010
In the current global marketplace, liberalization of trade in professional services (“services”) presents one of the biggest challenges and profitable opportunities for the international community. Changes in technology and state privatization polices over the past half century have made services the fastest growing sector in international trade. Despite such a transformation, the potential for further innovation and expansion in the services industries is in jeopardy. In response to public policy and regulatory concerns and political pressures to protect domestic jobs and industries, states have adopted a plethora of state-initiated discriminatory and restrictive policies against trade in services. Because existing international legal mechanisms are ill-equipped to resolve these issues, this paper proposes the formation of a unified international legal structure for services as a solution. In advancing this proposal, this paper examines the evolution of United States federalism and its impact on trade liberalization among states and the European Community’s Trademark regime to demonstrate that a harmonized legal system is the optimal framework for responding to changes in the economy and technology - challenges similar to those currently faced by services trade liberalization.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 51
Keywords: harmonization of professional services trade, United States Federalism, supranational layer, international trade agreements, preferential trade agreements, World Trade Organization (WTO), North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), European Community Trademark Regime, Intellectual Property, World I
Date posted: September 12, 2009 ; Last revised: September 26, 2011