The United States is not really a democracy. That’s the (simplified) conclusion of a recent study from Princeton University. Instead, economic elites and special interest groups enjoy tremendous sway in Washington, while “the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy.”
The tide is turning against investment treaties and free trade agreements that contain the controversial investor-state dispute system, which allows foreign investors to take up cases against host governments and claim compensation of up to billions of dollars.
As he embarks Tuesday on a major trip through East Asia, U.S. President Barack Obama will be focused on reassuring anxious – albeit sometimes annoying – allies that Washington remains determined to deepen its commitment to the region.
An accord that would be the largest trade agreement ever negotiated appears to be rolling back environmental safeguards that have been a key part of U.S.-led trade deals for much of the past decade.
Twenty years after it took effect, NAFTA has failed the vast majority of Mexicans.
Internal government documents leaked Monday offer a sombre picture of ongoing negotiations towards a major free-trade area covering much of the Pacific Rim. The area is a key objective for the administration of President Barack Obama but has been harshly criticised by a broad spectrum of global civil society.
Between concluding rounds of negotiations towards the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a major U.S.-proposed free trade agreement, a divisive fight has heated up over the extent to which countries should be allowed to regulate the sale of foreign – potentially far cheaper – tobacco products.
Two new trade agreements involving the two economic giants, the United States and the European Union, are leading a charge against the role of the state in the economy of developing countries.