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The WTO as a Mechanism for Securing Market Access Property Rights: Implications for Global Labor and Environmental Issues

Kyle Bagwell and Robert Staiger ()

Journal of Economic Perspectives, 2001, vol. 15, issue 3, 69-88

Abstract: Can the World Trade Organization (WTO) contribute to the attainment of sound labor and environmental policies? An answer requires an understanding of WTO rules. We argue that the purpose of WTO rules is to create a negotiating forum where governments can exchange secure market access commitments. From this perspective, we argue that supporters of sound trade, labor and environmental policies can benefit from a well-functioning WTO, because facilitating trade liberalization and preventing race-to-the-bottom/regulatory-chill problems go hand in hand, and each is accomplished by maintaining secure property rights over negotiated market access commitments.

JEL-codes: F16 F18 F13 Q28 J58 D23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2001
Note: DOI: 10.1257/jep.15.3.69
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Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:15:y:2001:i:3:p:69-88