Trade & Globalisation

Internet platforms are transforming global trade

Cardboard box, by bykst, under a CC0 licence
Since 2011, the eBay Public Policy Lab and a team of economists at Sidley Austin LLP have together studied the exporting practices of firms using the online commerce platform. We have uncovered a fundamental transformation within global trade. Global trade has expanded beyond container shipments of one large company’s wares along predetermined […]

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    After the US elections, how do we return to a constructive debate about trade?

After the US elections, how do we return to a constructive debate about trade?

Container, by GREGOR, under a CC0 licence
Trade is hardly ever a prominent US election issue, and yet this year it has become the campaign’s defining economic theme. That’s because politicians on both sides of the political spectrum have decided to blame free trade agreements for what is really a much deeper post-crisis economic malaise, characterised by persistently weak job markets […]

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    Foreign investment in critical areas like nuclear power need a formal vetting process

Foreign investment in critical areas like nuclear power need a formal vetting process

Hinkley Point A power station, by Rick Crowley, under a CC BY-SA 2.0 licence
One of the first decisions taken by Theresa May as prime minister was to delay deciding on the £18 billion Hinkley Point nuclear power project. Because it was a centrepiece project as part of former chancellor George Osborne’s “Golden Age” of closer bilateral ties with China, the […]

Brexit was a rational vote by the losers from global trade

Waiting in a breadline beside the Brooklyn Bridge during the Depression. Photo: pingnews.com. Public domain
Britons voted to leave the EU by 52% to 48%. The EU is a borderless area for the movement of goods, services, investment, labour, and more across 28 European countries. Those who voted for Brexit were often described as angrily rejecting the national and international […]

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    Does special treatment in trade benefit developing countries?

Does special treatment in trade benefit developing countries?

At the launch of the Doha Round, ministers of the World Trade Organization (WTO) stated that a central goal of the negotiations was “to improve the trading prospects [and to] ensure that developing countries […] secure a share in the growth of world trade commensurate with the needs of their economic development.” Fifteen years later, the Doha Round has […]

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    What kind of relationship with the EU is best for the UK economy post-Brexit?

What kind of relationship with the EU is best for the UK economy post-Brexit?

The UK has voted to leave the EU, but not in favour of any specific alternative to EU membership. This poses a challenge for UK policy makers and the new Prime Minister Theresa May. What should the UK’s relations with the EU be, following Brexit?

It is naïve to expect economic considerations will be the only factor that determines what […]

The art, and the deal, go global

Isabella Stewart Gardner was, in her day, the very model of a modern Medici. Beginning in 1891, she used her ample inheritance to buy up paintings by Old Masters and new artists alike during her frequent visits to Paris and Venice. She brought them back to her home town of Boston and displayed them in a museum built to […]

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    Network science shows London is at the heart of the world’s corporate elite

Network science shows London is at the heart of the world’s corporate elite

In this blog article, we investigate the position of the UK within the global corporate elite network. Firms are not individual market actors, but are typically embedded in dense networks of power and control, for example based on ownership or interlocking directorates. The CORPNET research group at the University of Amsterdam studies these networks as part of a five-year research programme funded […]

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    The quiet revolution in India’s private sector and international trade

The quiet revolution in India’s private sector and international trade

In early June of 2016 Narendra Modi, India’s Prime Minister, visited the US and addressed the US Congress. His speech was recognised for its ability to craft a global ambitious agenda and to speak like a global power. Nor was this speech an isolated incident. For many years Indian leaders and policy makers have shown growing activism at the global level, […]

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    Is Donald Trump right when he claims that China hurts US workers?

Is Donald Trump right when he claims that China hurts US workers?

China recently surpassed the United States as the country with the largest share of world trade in goods – see Figure 1. This boom in trade with China has led to much concern about the losers from rising import competition in manufacturing. In Donald Trump’s US presidential campaign, for example, he has continuously complained about the Chinese: ‘They’re stealing […]

Brexit is already affecting the British economy

Following the recent Brexit vote, it appears that neither David Cameron nor Tory contenders for the top job like Theresa May are willing to trigger the notorious Article 50 ‘before the end of the year‘. This is ironic because we were repeatedly told by Brexiters that we need to ‘take back control’ of our country as soon as possible. […]

Post Brexit vote, a fresh look at globalisation

There were a lot of dramatic headlines over the weekend suggesting that Brexit signals the beginning of the end of globalization. Surely, it is too soon to understand all the ramifications of the British referendum. But at the same time, today is surely a good day to make the case for multilateralism. While there are plenty of reasons to […]

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    Leaving the EU would almost certainly damage our economic prospects

Leaving the EU would almost certainly damage our economic prospects

The economic consequences of leaving the EU have naturally been a central focus of the referendum campaign. As June 23 draws near we bring together the conclusions from our research on the likely consequences, and reflect on some of the claims made.

First and foremost a vote to leave the EU would almost certainly make us financially worse off compared […]

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    Foreign investors love Britain – but Brexit would end the affair

Foreign investors love Britain – but Brexit would end the affair

Foreign direct investment (FDI) comprises investments from outside a country to set up new establishments, expand existing ones or purchase local companies. According to government body UK Trade & Investment, the UK has an estimated stock of over £1 trillion of FDI, and only the United States and China have more. About half of this stock of FDI is […]

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    Brexit could bring a potential catastrophe for the UK financial sector

Brexit could bring a potential catastrophe for the UK financial sector

The June 2016 Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM) survey of experts asked for views on the impact of the UK’s referendum on membership of the European Union for the country’s financial sector. Almost all panel members thought that a vote for Brexit would lead to a significant disruption to financial markets and asset prices for several months, which would put […]

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    Less trade and lower living standards in the UK: the price of Brexit

Less trade and lower living standards in the UK: the price of Brexit

There are many issues that will weigh in the minds of UK voters in the run-up to the referendum on membership of the European Union (EU) on 23 June. Many people feel that they are oppressed by a remote, undemocratic super-state that can over-rule UK laws. Others believe that the EU promotes better co-operation between communities that were at […]

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    “A stark choice on 23 June will determine our fate for generations to come”

“A stark choice on 23 June will determine our fate for generations to come”

Even those campaigning to leave the European Union (EU) concede that there will be negative economic consequences in the next few years following a vote for Brexit. CEP researchers have been analysing the long- term effects of Brexit and we conclude that they will be even worse than the short-term damage.

Our best estimate is that GDP per capita will […]

The distributional effects of Brexit: Who bears the pain?

In recent days, pro-Brexiteers have been saying that leaving the EU may hurt the rich but it will help the poor. Although there is now a strong consensus that leaving the EU would damage the overall economy (HM Treasury, 2016; IFS, 2016; OECD, 2016; NIESR, 2016, The Guardian 28 May 2016)  there has been almost no breakdown of what […]

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    Don’t blame the EU for the troubles of the fishing industry in the UK

Don’t blame the EU for the troubles of the fishing industry in the UK

It is indisputable that many ports and coastal communities around the UK have lost many of the boats and fishers that contributed so much to their coastal character. So where did all the fishers go? And what is the right policy response?

Any analysis of UK fisheries needs to begin with a history of overfishing because its legacy, and our […]