Trump’s one-on-one approach to China has dangerous implications for global trade and world peace : The Conversation


Last week President Donald Trump seemed to be on the cusp of a trade deal with China. A couple of threatening tweets later, the odds of ending the 16-month-old U.S.-China trade war have dropped dramatically.

Whether or not American and Chinese trade negotiators ultimately salvage a deal – the U.S. says China backpedaled on a commitment and intends to raise tariffs within days – the episode highlights drawbacks in Trump’s trade strategy, which tends to be protectionist, confrontational and negotiated one on one.

Unfortunately, Trump’s policies are only an acceleration of a trend in international trade that’s been going on for several decades. It’s a move away from multilateralism – in which many countries agree on certain trading principles – and toward bilateralism – which pits nation against nation, raising the stakes.

I am a specialist in the politics of trade. My observations lead me to believe that the increasing abandonment of multilateralism will have pernicious long-term consequences. Not only will trade become more costly for businesses and consumers, it may even make the planet a more dangerous place.

 

Source: Trump’s one-on-one approach to China has dangerous implications for global trade and world peace : The Conversation

Henry Newman: How to manage No Deal? To start with, pledge to reduce tariffs. | Conservative Home


Another alternative, any comments?

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Brexit negotiations are stalled. Only one issue matters – the Irish backstop. Despite all the drama and noises off about Chequers, “Norway for now”, and Super Canada, none of that matters if we cannot agree a divorce. And, unless the EU shifts tack, the only path to an orderly divorce is via the backstop. So we are facing down a growing risk of No Deal. No Deal could mean tariffs on trade with our largest partner – the EU. So, the Government should commit now to reduce our overall tariffs in the event of No Deal.

No Deal should be nobody’s preferred option. It would mean significant disruption. Aviation, haulage and transport, citizen’s rights, and many other areas would potentially be affected. Almost by definition it would suggest that relations across the Continent had broken down – the political and strategic effects could be profound.

But there might be little choice if the alternative would mean a backstop which threatens the long-term integrity of the United Kingdom. So what would it mean in economic terms? Open Europe’s analysis, published yesterday, reveals that in the medium term the static macroeconomic effects of No Deal would be material but relatively small. GDP growth would be affected – down an estimated 2.2 per cent by 2030.

Our model considers the cost of tariffs with the EU, as well as costs for customs and other non-tariff barriers. But despite these new costs, we found that No Deal would not be the biggest determinant of our prosperity over that period. Over the medium term up to 2030 the UK economy would continue to grow by around 30 per cent, even in the event of No Deal. Our research is in line with findings by the LSE, PwC and the OBR. Yes, other people have come up with bigger numbers, including the Treasury, but they have thrown in other effects which are much harder to model successfully.

What our research also shows is that the Government could take action to mitigate some of the medium-term effects of No Deal. If we left without a deal, there would be tariffs payable on our trade with the EU under WTO rules. (Britain can’t just choose not to levy tariffs on European trade). But we can change our overall tariff regime. Although our WTO commitments impose a maximum level on tariffs which can be charged with any member state, it’s open to the UK to charge less as long as they do this on a most-favoured nation basis. WTO commitments are a ceiling not a floor.

So in our No Deal report Open Europe looked at the effect of lowering all our tariffs on industrial and manufactured goods to zero (and we phased in reductions on agricultural goods). We then also improved our openness to services trade and foreign investment (we moved the UK to “best in class” levels). These steps – which the UK could do without any negotiation – would dramatically reduce the impact of No Deal. Our model suggests that the macroeconomic effect over the same period up to 2030 would be reduced from a 2.2 per cent to 0.5 per cent drag on growth.

 

Source: Henry Newman: How to manage No Deal? To start with, pledge to reduce tariffs. | Conservative Home

EU will suffer if it fails to negotiate a Brexit deal – EXPRESS COMMENT | Express Comment | Comment | Express.co.uk


She also had every right to expect the EU negotiators to come back with something meaningful and they have failed to do so.

Instead, they have come up with the entirely ludicrous suggestion that we hold a second referendum while at the same time muttering darkly about a hard border in Ireland. Frankly, they need a reality check.

Perhaps we shouldn’t be too surprised about the call for a second referendum.

The EU has a history of forcing second referendums on countries until they get the result they want.

 

Source: EU will suffer if it fails to negotiate a Brexit deal – EXPRESS COMMENT | Express Comment | Comment | Express.co.uk

May’s new Brexit plan. There is an alternative – from within the Government itself. | Conservative Home


The Cabinet was reportedly presented with a Treasury assessment of the impact of four outcomes to the Brexit talks: no deal, a Canadian-type deal, the EEA…and the Government’s own new scheme.  This itself should give pause for thought to the suggestion that, other than the EEA and no deal, there is no alternative to the plan agreed at Chequers.  It is a statement of the obvious that there will be as many of the last as there are people willing to propose them.

Far more to the point, however, there was one from within the Government itself – a proposal for it to seek “Canada Plus Plus Plus”, as David Davis once referred to it.  It is well known that DexEU was working on a draft of the White Paper that would outline this idea during the run-up to the Chequers meeting.  We are told that it went through some nine iterations.  The last ones were largely cuts for length.  None of them have been made public.  Until now.

Today, ConservativeHome publishes key extracts from a full draft of this White Paper.  They are not from one of the briefer final versions, but they set before our readers the main pillars of DexEU’s approach, which we are told were unchanged in any of those nine drafts.  As we write, we don’t have the advantage of also having seen the Government’s own White Paper, apparently to be published later, and thus the capacity to make comparisons between its text and that we publish today.

However, there will clearly be substantial overlap between the two – but, on the basis of the Government document published in the aftermath of Chequers, some key differences too.  A central one is the proposed regulatory treatment of manufactured goods.  In her Mansion House speech earlier this year, the Prime Minister referred in this context to “a comprehensive system of mutual recognition”.  She also set out in her Florence speech last year a three-basket approach to regulation.

“There will be areas which do affect our economic relations where we and our European friends may have different goals; or where we share the same goals but want to achieve them through different means.  And there will be areas where we want to achieve the same goals in the same ways, because it makes sense for our economies,” she said.  This was the approach agreed at the Chequers mee

 

Source: May’s new Brexit plan. There is an alternative – from within the Government itself. | Conservative Home

Britain warns Boeing it might lose business over Bombardier row


BELFAST/LONDON (Reuters) – Britain told U.S. planemaker Boeing on Wednesday that it could lose out on British defence contracts because of its dispute with Canadian rival Bombardier which has put 4,200 jobs at risk in Northern Ireland.

The U.S. Department of Commerce on Tuesday imposed a 220-percent duty on Bombardier’s (BBDb.TO) CSeries jets, whose wings are made at a plant in Belfast, following a complaint by Boeing (BA.N) which accuses Canada of unfairly subsidising Bombardier.

The ruling is a political headache for Britain’s minority Conservative government, which relies on support from a Northern Irish party to stay in power.

It also undermines the government’s assurances to Britons that free trade and London’s close ties with Washington will be pillars of Britain’s prosperity and global influence after it leaves the European Union in 2019.

“This is not the behaviour we expect from Boeing and it could indeed jeopardise our future relationship with them,” British Defence Secretary Michael Fallon told reporters in Belfast.

“Boeing has significant defence contracts with us and still expects to win further contracts. Boeing wants and we want a long-term partnership but that has to be two-way.”

Boeing says it employs 2,200 people in the United Kingdom, which is one of the company’s biggest defence clients.

 

Source: Britain warns Boeing it might lose business over Bombardier row

Republican contradictions abound in the age of Trump – The Washington Post


With the election of Donald Trump, Republicans will need to face up to a series of contradictions that will strike at the heart of right-wing orthodoxy. Trump has not yet taken office, but Republicans’ intellectual coherence is already at the breaking point.

Trump’s frail ego demands that Republicans deny Russian espionage. (They’d do well to listen to Robert Gates, who explained that “it clearly was aimed at discrediting our elections and I think it was aimed certainly at weakening Mrs. [Hillary] Clinton.”) Now Republicans will have to decide whether the party of Trump believes in a strong national security or in protecting Trump from hurt feelings.

Trump’s desire to “make deals” and bully individual companies has already undercut the Republican belief in the free marketplace and the party’s aversion to government picking “winners and losers.”

Source: Republican contradictions abound in the age of Trump – The Washington Post