Trade, Investment, and the Multilateral Trading System
The world economy now trades not in final goods or services, but components, parts, tasks and activities and this variety of trade occurs not between countries but companies/firms, the majority of which are foreign affiliates of different multinationals. This increasing inseparability between trade in goods, services, and investment overtime or the so-called trade-services-investment nexus calls for a common set of norms that guide their trade volumes at the multilateral level, which is presently not existing. Recent attempts by some of the world’s largest trading countries to instigate protectionist policies seem to have furthered the extent of uncertainty involved in establishing a multilateral trading/investment system. To this end, the chapter emphasises on the role of bilateral/plurilateral or regional trade agreements, which have the WTO rules as their foundations, in (at least) paving a way towards multilateralism.
KeywordsTrade Investment WTO Multilateral trading/investment system
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