WASHINGTON, July 2011—Preferential trade agreements (PTAs) constitute a major channel for countries seeking to gain access to external markets; liberalize their own markets; and secure long-term links with strategic partners.
The world of preferential trade agreements is complex and expanding fast. The purpose of Preferential Trade Agreement Policies for Development is to bring to the fore the most recent policy thinking and analytical work in the key areas covered by modern PTAs. Beyond the progressive elimination of barriers at the border, PTAs are increasingly seeking to address a host of behind-the-border issues. These include cooperation in the areas of investment, trade facilitation, competition policy, and government procurement, as well as broader social issues related to the regulation of the environment and the protection of labor and human rights. The book offers unique insight into these new and less well surveyed policy areas.
The product of collaboration between the International Trade Department and the World Bank Institute, Preferential Trade Agreement Policies for Development builds on several years of policy research within and outside the World Bank, as well as previous World Bank publications on the topic. With contributions from some of the world’s leading trade experts, the book covers a broad array of regional trade issues relevant to both developed and developing countries.