Spaghetti Bowl Phenomenon and Crucification of Multilateralism: Task Ahead for WTO
9 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2006
Date Written: December 10, 2006
As a staunch supporter of free trade Prof. Jagdish Bhagwati believes in the ethos and goals of the World Trade Organization. According to him, restrictions on trade and capital flows result in creation of 'dead weight losses'. He is also against the global movement towards the creation of regional trading agreements. He uses the term 'Spaghetti Bowl' to elaborate his critique of the proliferation of regional trading agreements. Regional trading arrangements were conceived as an exception to the MFN notion to cater to the specific needs of developing as well as developed countries. But a major drawback of this free trade regime has been identified, which tends to proliferation of regionalism at the cost of dilution of multilateralism. Now the challenge before the World Trade Organization (WTO) is to develop mechanics to balance the growth of RTAs/PTAs/FTAs and multilateralism in international trade relations.
Keywords: Rules of Origin, WTO, Spaghetti Bowl, Free Trade, Globalization, RTA, PTA
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