'Best Practice' in the Regulation of International Labor Standards: Lessons of the U.S.-Cambodia Textile Agreement

20 Pages Posted: 27 Jun 2007

See all articles by Don Wells

Don Wells

McMaster University - School of Labour Studies

Abstract

International trade agreements have been widely criticized for their failure to promote effective regulation of international labor rights and standards. This article assesses the singular exception to this failure: the US Cambodia Textile Agreement (UCTA). The article evaluates evidence of the impact of this international trade agreement on labor standards in Cambodia's apparel industry, concluding that, although monitoring procedures are imperfect and labor standards compliance is uneven, the UCTA provides a "best practice" model for the global governance of international labor standards. Highlighted in this model are the importance of improved market access as an incentive to improve labor standards, and of credible, high quality, independent monitoring of factory-level labor standards by the International Labor Organization.

Suggested Citation

Wells, Don, 'Best Practice' in the Regulation of International Labor Standards: Lessons of the U.S.-Cambodia Textile Agreement. Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal, Vol. 27, No. 3, p. 357, 2006, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=996876

Don Wells (Contact Author)

McMaster University - School of Labour Studies ( email )

1280 Main Street West
Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4M4
Canada

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