The Genesis of the GATT

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Overview

This book is part of a wider project on the economic logic behind the General Agreements on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). This volume asks: What does the historical record indicate about the aims and objectives of the framers of the GATT? Where did the provisions of the GATT come from and how did they evolve through various international meetings and drafts? To what extent does the historical record provide support for one or more of the economic rationales for the GATT? This book examines the motivations and contributions of the two main framers of the GATT, the United States and the United Kingdom, as well as the smaller role of other countries. The framers desired a commercial agreement on trade practices as well as negotiated reductions in trade barriers. Both were sought as a way to expand international trade to promote world prosperity, restrict the use of discriminatory policies to reduce conflict over trade, and thereby establish economic foundations for maintaining world peace.

About the Author:
Douglas A. Irwin is Robert E. Maxwell Professor of Arts and Sciences in the Economics Department at Dartmouth College

About the Author:
Petros C. Mavroidis is Edwin B. Parker Professor of Law at Columbia Law School, New York, and Professor of Law at the University of Neuchatel

About the Author:
Alan O. Sykes is James and Patricia Kowal Professor of Law at Stanford Law School

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...Irwin (Darthmouth College, Free Trade Under Fire, CH, Mar'03, 40-4109), Mavroidis (Columbia Law School), and Sykes (Stanford Law School) provide an informative historical account of the creation and evolution of the GATT, which is a cornerstone of of the economic architecture after WW II was intended to establish a rules-based system in the trade sector to parallel the rules-based IMF structure in monetary system...excellent bibliography...Highly Recommended..."
—I. Walter, New York University, CHOICE
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Douglas A. Irwin is Robert E. Maxwell Professor of Arts and Sciences in the Economics Department at Dartmouth College. He is author of Free Trade under Fire (2002) and Against the Tide: An Intellectual History of Free Trade (1996).

Petros C. Mavroidis is Edwin Parker Professor of Law at Columbia Law School, New York, and Professor of Law at the University of Neuchâtel. He is chief reporter of the American Law Institute for the project 'Principle of International Trade: The WTO' and Research Fellow at the Centre for Economic Policy Research.

Alan O. Sykes is James and Patricia Kowal Professor of Law at Stanford Law School. A leading expert on the application of economics to legal problems, Sykes has focused his research on international economic relations.

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Table of Contents


Executive Summary     ix
Preface     xi
Foreword     xiii
Introduction     1
The Creation of the GATT     5
After the First World War     5
The Atlantic Charter and Article VII Negotiations     12
The Structure of Anglo-American Negotiations     22
The 1942 Meade Draft for Commercial Union     27
The Washington Seminar, September-October 1943     37
Years of Deadlock and Delay, January 1944-September 1945     43
The British Loan Negotiations, Washington, September-October 1945     65
Moving Toward the GATT     72
First Preparatory Meeting, London, October-November 1946     77
Toward Geneva, December 1946-April 1947     80
Second Preparatory Meeting, Geneva, Switzerland, April-October 1947     84
Conclusion     95
The Negotiation of the GATT     98
London Calling: The London Draft     104
The Mandate     104
Institutional Issues     106
The Output     108
An Assessment     109
Atlantic Crossing: the New York Conference (1947)     111
The Mandate     111
Institutional Issues     112
The Output     113
An Assessment     113
GATT Finalized: the Geneva Conference (1947)     114
The Mandate     114
Institutional Issues     115
The Output     116
An Assessment     119
The Havana Conference (1947-1948)     120
The Mandate     120
Institutional Issues     120
The Output     121
An Assessment     122
The Review Session of 1954-1955     122
The Mandate     122
Institutional Issues     122
The Output     123
An Assessment     123
Development Enters the GATT: Negotiating Part IV (1965)     124
The Mandate     124
Institutional Issues     126
The Output     126
An Assessment     132
The Evolution of the GATT Provisions     133
MFN     133
Tariff Reduction     135
Internal Taxes (Domestic Regulation)     138
Transit     143
Antidumping and Countervailing Duties     144
Tariff Valuation     146
Customs Formalities     147
Marks of Origin      149
Publication and Administration of Trade Regulations     150
Quantitative Restrictions     151
Balance of Payments     153
Exchange Restrictions     155
Subsidies     156
State Trading     159
Safeguards     161
General Exceptions     162
Consultations - Dispute Settlement     165
Preferential Arrangements     167
Institutional Provisions     168
Boycotts     169
Information, Statistics, and Trade Terminology     170
Property Rights on the GATT     171
The Rationales for the GATT     176
Economic Theory and Trade Agreements     177
Commitments and Trade Agreements     184
Foreign Policy Motivations for Trade Agreements     188
Concluding Assessments     197
Conclusion     201
Documents Relating to the Negotiations     203
General Provisions for Inclusion in Trade Agreements (1941)     203
A Proposal for an International Commercial Union (1942)     213
Anglo-American Discussions under Article VII: Commercial Policy (1943)     222
Proposed Multilateral Commercial Convention on Commercial Policy: Summary of Significant Provisions (1944)     239
Excerpts from "Proposals for Expansion of World Trade and Employment" (1945)     244
Preparations for Preliminary Meeting on Trade and Employment (1946)     261
U.S. Delegation Report on First Preparatory Meeting for an International Conference on Trade and Employment (1946)     270
U.S. Report on the Geneva GATT Negotiations (1947)     277
Negotiating Committees and Subcommittees     285
London Conference     285
New York Conference     287
The Geneva Conference     288
The Havana Conference     291
The Review Session     293
The Negotiation of Part IV of the GATT     295
References     297
Index     307
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