Taxiing on the apron

Chilean president visits region to talk trade

At home in Chile, Michelle Bachelet – that nation’s president, elected to her second term in a landslide vote in 2013 – works a tough balancing act.

Her Pacific nation is home to robust capitalists – mine owners, winemakers, fruit growers whose Southern Hemisphere seasons enable them to supply Americans in winter – and militant communist and anarchist groups, which press hard, and often successfully, for taxing the rich to pay for college tuition, retirement plans, health insurance. A socialist and a single mother, Bachelet governs in coalition with the Christian Democrats. On Monday in New York, she presided over a special meeting of the U.N. Security Council to help prevent wars.

But in Wilmington and Philadelphia this week, Bachelet is all business. At a warehouse at the Delaware port on Tuesday, she drew a crowd of U.S. and Chilean businesspeople and workers, and a collection of pro-free-trade Democrats – led by U.S. Sen. Tom Carper (D., Del.), U.S. Rep. John Carney (D., Del.), and Delaware Gov. Jack Markell, also a Democrat, who worked as a young banker in Chile in the 1980s before becoming a Comcast executive. Read more:


Nexus Between Trade, Rising Poverty

The relationship between trade and poverty is inverted. Countries with higher proportions of global trade tend to have less of poverty. Conversely, countries, which contribute the least to global trade have higher poverty rates. This shows the importance of good trade policies in reducing poverty rates and increasing prosperity. Also, this shows why there is intense competition for export markets even by countries that already control significant share of global trade. Trade facilitation is becoming critically important to the economy of poverty-stricken areas. Read more: 

India Should Declare Unilateral Free Trade

Indian politics has been controlled by interest groups for years, particularly agricultural. As a result, the Indian government continues to miss opportunities for true gains in trade. For years, agriculture has been subsidized by the Indian government, at a price borne by the taxpayer. If subsidies ended, Indian citizens could be relieved from unnecessary tax burdens. Furthermore, agricultural prices could still remain low for consumers in India if the government moves toward unilateral trade. Easing access to Western markets that also subsidize their agriculture would give the Indian consumer the lower price at the expense of other countries. Read more:

Status Quo Bias and the Difficulty of Reforming the International Economic Law System

“The more things stay the same, the harder they are to change.” Today, there are thousands of treaties that address problems with the international investment system dating back to the end of the colonial era. Meanwhile, anti-dumping laws purport to address “unfair” pricing for imports already deterred by anti-trust laws. There also remains the Export-Import Bank, established in 1934, which has been declared to serve no necessary domestic policy purpose. These and other obsolete trade policies are propped by vested interests and entrenched by their worldwide reach. Rather than elongating issues, let us seize the opportunity to propose multilateral reforms that will advance prosperity. Read more:

Single Visa System Gets Major Boost

A current project by the World Bank to promote intra-regional trade in Africa will create Univisa, a single visa system for countries who are members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC). The project will begin harmonizing visa requirements for the Kavango Zambezi Trans-frontier Conservation Area (Kaza) countries in Africa, starting with Zambia and Zimbabwe. In addition to a four stage implementation process, the World Bank plans to host high-level consultation, modernization, and advocacy events to ensure travel time between cities and bureaucracy decrease as well. The World Bank expects the plan to strengthen the tourism sector in Kaza countries, contributing to new jobs and a more prosperous economy. Read More: 

It’s Now Time for a Free Trade Zone in Canada: James Moore

According to Industry Minister James Moore, it is easier for a foreign investor to do business in Canada than it is for a domestic firm to access its own marketplace. The aggregate cost of regional protectionist policies in Canada is tens of billions of dollars a year. The stifling business atmosphere can be observed through the restrictions on moving products, burdening job elimination, and limited consumer choice. For this reason, Moore has dedicated himself to creating a true free trade zone in Canada. On board with his efforts, Canada’s federal government is working to increase trade transparency with the construction of an International Trade Barriers Index. The index will serve as a reference to all the protectionist rules and regulations of Canada’s different provinces. Read more:

From Rice Cookers to Robots: Shopping for the Latest Gadgets in North Korea

North Korea’s 2014 Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair doubled in size compared to last year. Despite recent sanctions, many luxury items were available to consumers. Several of these products appeared to be from overseas, such as flat screen TVs, laptops and robot vacuum cleaners. Accordingly, accepted currencies included the Chinese Yuan, Euro, and US dollar. Foreign economists deem this increasing interest in trade fairs a reflection of the quality development of new products and potential economic growth. Read more:

Morocco Seeks to Boost Africa Relations, Investments

Moroccan King Mohammed VI is currently pushing further integration with the African continent. Regional integration has been a large contributing factor to the rising economic standing of Morocco. 85% of Morocco’s foreign trade takes place within Africa, with 26 agreements arranged with the Ivory Coast. These agreements with neighboring African nations vary among a range of private and public sectors and are expanding to areas such as oil, gas, fishing, phosphate, and bauxite. Morocco expects more investments and trade as a result of their expansive reach across the continent. Read more:

Power Trading Between Nepal and India

The integration of energy market through formation of Power Trading Companies helps to optimize existing energy resources and provides commercial outlook to the sector by catalyzing investment especially from domestic and foreign private sector, says Pramod Rijal, associate from Atlas’ Nepal based partner organization Samriddhi, The Prosperity Foundation. There is a free flow of electricity in Nordic countries and prices are determined by free interaction of supply and demand and the mechanism has helped new players to enter the market which eventually reduces the price and brings new innovation. Additionally, it has also created energy security in the region. East African countries like Rwanda, Tanzania, and Kenya are also reforming their energy policies so as to aid the formation of a common market for energy exchange. Read more

Kollaer: Expand Trade, Expand the Economy

Trade is at the very heart of economic success in Texas. Every year, Texas companies export hundreds of billions of dollars in goods and services to foreign markets. In fact, Texas has ranked as the nation”s #1 exporting Ce a mis en vente des billets qui couvrent le buy-in pour le grand tournoi d’octobre. state for 12 years in a row. Trade funnels hundreds of billions of dollars back home to support Texas jobs, families, and our state”s much-envied economic might. But for all of our exporting success in Texas, federal trade policies are holding the whole country back from its economic potential. It”s critical that Congress act quickly to expand our foreign trade if we hope to get our national economy back on track again. Read more