Monthly Archives: January 2018

Caribbean Trade & Development Digest – January 21-27, 2018

Welcome to the Caribbean Trade and Development Digest for the week of January 21-27, 2018! We are pleased to share some of the major trade and development headlines and analysis across the Caribbean region and the World. We hope you enjoy this edition.


China looks forward to deepening trade with CARICOM

St. Lucia News Online: Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries have indicated a willingness to work with China regarding the socio-economic development of the 15-member grouping. Read more

IMF predicts improvements in economic prospects for Caribbean/Latin America in 2018

Jamaica Observer: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says economic prospects for the region are generally improving and modest growth is expected in 2018 and 2019. Read more

Bees are All the Buzz in Guyana

St. Kitts & Nevis Observer: There’s a new buzz in Guyana, known in the agricultural sector for its sugar and rice. The Government of Guyana, with support from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), is aiming to add honey to the list, and in the process, provide a sustainable pathway out of poverty for Guyanese. Read more

Sugar production up but concerns linger over changes in EU market regime

The Reporter (Belize): Sugar production at the Belize Sugar Industries (BSI) at Tower Hill in Orange Walk is up by roughly 10%, with cane quality also better than the same time last year. Read more

CARICOM signals interest in One Belt, One Road

Stabroek: The Caribbean Community (Caricom) has signalled its interest in working with China to ascertain how its goals and priorities can be best linked with existing, new and emerging development initiatives from the East Asian country. Read more

Barbados amongst eight jurisdictions removed from EU Tax list

Barbados Advocate: Barbados has been named amongst eight jurisdictions that have been removed from the EU’s list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes. This follows commitments made at a high political level, to remedy EU concerns. Read more

Barbados International Business Ministry comments on blacklist removal

Nation News: The Ministry of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development says Barbados’ removal from the European Union’s “blacklist” of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions augurs well for the island. Read more


AU, UN-ECA underscore continental free trade area for Africa’s development

The New York Times: The African Union (AU) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UN-ECA) on Thursday stressed the need to keep the momentum going in the realisation of the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) for Africa’s development. Read more

Trans-Pacific trade deal to go ahead without the US

Financial Times: Pacific Rim nations aim to sign a new deal in March, without the US. Read more

Australia unveils plans to become one of the world’s top 10 arms exporters
The Guardian: Australia is set to become one of the world’s largest arms exporters under a controversial Turnbull government plan. Read more
Singapore and Sri Lanka sign free trade agreement
Channel NewsAsia: The Sri Lanka-Singapore Free Trade Agreement will see Singapore companies enjoying potential tariff savings of up to S$10 million each year, among other benefits. Read more

Former New Zealand MP says Canada’s new trans-Pacific trade deal may leave Indigenous Peoples defenceless

CBC Canada: On the cusp of Canada’s signing of the resurrected Trans-Pacific Partnership, a former Maori parliamentarian from New Zealand is warning First Nation peoples that the deal could leave nation-to-nation treaties vulnerable to foreign interests. Read more

West Africa should learn better trade and integration from its great ancient empires

Quartz Africa: The dream of the founding fathers of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) was, among others, to foster trade and development among member states. But the integration dream will only be realized if institutional barriers to trade are addressed. Read more

Crunch time for NAFTA as negotiators open round of talks in Montreal

CNBC: U.S., Canadian and Mexican negotiators opened a key week-long round of talks to modernize NAFTA on Tuesday amid persistent concerns the Trump administration is preparing to walk away from the trade deal, a move that could roil financial markets. Read more

Uruguay to push for free trade agreement with China in Mercosur

Xinhua: Uruguay plans to push for a free trade agreement (FTA) between China and the Southern Common Market (Mercosur), the largest South American trade bloc, a top Uruguayan official said Wednesday. Read more

Africa: free trade zones to boost trade

Al Jazeera: Trade across Africa is about to get an overhaul with measures aimed at cutting the cost of doing business. It is hoped that a digital free trade zone will make connecting online easier for export and import companies. Read more

What’s the deal with global trade? The view from Davos 2018

WEF: World leaders came to the defence of free trade and global cooperation at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos this week. Speeches by Narendra Modi, Theresa May, Emmanuel Macron, Angela Merkel and Justin Trudeau declared their countries “open for business.”Read more

US, Korea continue modification and amendment negotiations on KORUS FTA

USTR: United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer announced today negotiations on amendments and modifications of the United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) will be held in Seoul, Korea on January 31 and February 1, 2018. Read more

Commission reports on progress in EU-Mexico trade negotiations

EU: The Commission today published the report from the latest round of talks for a new, modernised EU-Mexico trade agreement that took place in Brussels from 12 to 22 December 2017. Read more

UN Environment and WTO launch dialogue on healthier environments through trade

WTO: UN Environment Executive Director Erik Solheim and World Trade Organization Director-General Roberto Azevêdo announced today that their organizations would join forces to launch a new dialogue on promoting innovative ways of using trade to generate greater opportunities to strengthen our economies and our environments at the same time. Read more

WTO issues panel report regarding EU duties on biodiesel from Indonesia

WTO: On 25 January the WTO circulated the panel report in the case brought by Indonesia in “European Union — Anti-Dumping Measures on Biodiesel from Indonesia” (DS480). Read more

Argentina ratifies the Trade Facilitation Agreement

WTO: Argentina, host of the 11th Ministerial Conference recently held in Buenos Aires, has completed its ratification process for the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA). Read more

Trilateral symposium to examine how innovative technologies can promote health-related SDGs

WTO: The WTO, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) will convene a symposium on 26 February 2018 to discuss challenges and opportunities to ensure that innovative technologies are developed in order to realize the right to health and the health-related UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Read more

Korean request for retaliation against US in washers dispute referred to arbitration

WTO: A Korean request for retaliation against the United States in a dispute over US anti-dumping and countervailing duties on large residential washers from Korea was referred to WTO arbitration. The matter was discussed at a 22 January meeting of the WTO’s Dispute Settlement Body (DSB). Read more


CARICOM States and the WTO Dispute Settlement System: the case for greater engagement

Paper by distinguished University of the West Indies law lecturer and trade attorney, Mrs. Nicole Foster published in the Commonwealth Law Bulletin. This paper “examines the participation of member states of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) in the World Trade Organisation (WTO)’s dispute settlement system and its associated negotiations”. Read more

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Caribbean Trade and Development Digest – January 14-21, 2018

Welcome to the Caribbean Trade and Development Digest for the week of January 14-21, 2018! We are pleased to share some of the major trade and development headlines and analysis across the Caribbean region and the World. We hope you enjoy this edition.


LaRocque: EU assistance crucial to sustainable development

St. Kitts & Nevis Observer: CARICOM and CARIFORUM Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque said in his remarks at the launch of the 10th EDF CARIFORUM Crime and Security Programme Jan. 17 in Barbados that the “strength of cooperation” between the European Union (EU) and the Caribbean” is critical. Read more

United effort needed to fight crime

Barbados Advocate: Now more than ever, CARICOM countries need to remain united in their efforts to fight crime in all its dimensions. Secretary General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and CARIFORUM, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, shared the above sentiments as he delivered remarks at the launch of the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) CARIFORUM Crime and Security Cooperation Programme. Read more

Spotlight: CELAC eyes enormous benefits from China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative

Xinhua: With the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative grabbing headlines around the world over the past years, Latin America and the Caribbean is giving special attention to how the Initiative could be extended to the region. Read more

Commercial activity seen as main boost for CAL-Cuba route

LoopNews: Commercial activity is being seen as one of the motivating factors to fill Caribbean Airlines seats from Cuba. Read more

St. Vincent & the Grenadines to launch medical cannabis industry

LoopNews: St Vincent and the Grenadines is joining the emerging global market of medical cannabis with plans to amend legislation to allow for the export of the drug. Read more

CARICOM should ‘free up’ the herb

Antigua Observer: Given the global push to decriminalise marijuana, the prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, is saying that CARICOM countries should consider doing the same, looking at the laws of developed countries to customise them to suit the Caribbean environment. Read more


Malaysia trade ministry to approach WTO on EU move to limit palm oil use

Reuters: Malaysia, the world’s second-largest palm producer, said on Monday it would work with other producing countries to voice “strong concerns” to the World Trade Organization, following the European Union’s move to back a ban on using palm oil to make biofuels. Read more

Rona Ambrose: Trump nixing NAFTA is just a matter of ‘when’

CTVNews: Canada’s trade insiders say they are preparing for the worst when it comes to the fate of NAFTA, with one top adviser saying it’s only a matter of time before U.S. President Donald Trump pulls out of the North American Free Trade Agreement. Read more

Australia and Japan committed to signing Asia Pacific trade pact by March, Turnbull says

Todayonline: Australia and Japan are committed to signing an Asia Pacific trade deal by March with countries in the region ready to forge a pact to replace the derailed Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Thursday (Jan 18). Read more

USTR Releases Annual Reports on China’s and Russia’s WTO Compliance

USTR: The reports, delivered to Congress, are required by law and assess China’s and Russia’s implementation of their respective WTO commitments. Read more

Report: EU trade schemes promote economic development and human rights

EU News: The report published today jointly by the European Commission and the European External Action Service shows the positive impact of the European Union’s duty-rebate schemes on developing economies. Read more

WTO Arbitrator determines “reasonable period of time” in US-China anti-dumping dispute

WTO: On 19 January an Arbitrator issued his award regarding the “reasonable period of time” for implementing the recommendations and rulings of the Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) in the dispute “United States – Certain Methodologies and Their Application to Anti-Dumping Proceedings Involving China” (WT/DS471).  Read more

Trump says terminating NAFTA would yield the ‘best deal’

CNBC: Trump’s comments come less than a week before trade negotiators from the United States, Canada and Mexico meet in Montreal for the sixth of seven scheduled rounds of negotiations to update NAFTA. Read more

France would have voted to leave EU too if in UK’s situation, French leader Macron says

CNBC: France would likely have followed the U.K. and also voted to leave the European Union if the opportunity had presented itself, French President Emmanuel Macron said in an interview Sunday. Read more

WTO compliance panel issues ruling regarding Chinese duties on US

WTO: On 18 January a WTO panel issued its compliance report in the dispute “China – Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duty Measures on Broiler Products from the United States — Recourse to Article 21.5 Of The DSU by the United States” (DS427). Read more

WTO: Australia has requested WTO consultations with Canada regarding measures maintained by the Canadian government and the Canadian provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia concerning the sale of wine. The request was circulated to WTO members on 16 January. Read more

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Trump’s obscene remark confirms administration’s orientation on US-Caribbean/African Relations

Alicia Nicholls

Much of the international news coverage this weekend has surrounded a reported obscene remark made by United States President Donald Trump about Haiti, El Salvador and the fifty-four internationally recognised countries of the African continent (countries with majority non-white populations) during a bi-partisan meeting last week on immigration. He was further reported as stating, on the contrary, that immigrants from countries like Norway (majority white population) would be preferred.

The vulgar phrase attributed to the US President has been widely reported ad nauseum and there is, therefore, no need for me to repeat it here. Both the African Union and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) have released statements strongly condemning the President’s reported choice of words. President Trump eventually denied using the obscenity, though conceding he had used ‘strong language’ in the meeting. However, the incident was confirmed by several persons who had been present at the meeting, including one Republican senator.

The underlying assumption that immigrants from the Caribbean, Latin America and Africa have nothing to offer the US is erroneous and unfortunate for several reasons.

  • It ignores the fact that the US is a land of immigrants and that the majority of immigrants to the US are law-abiding citizens who make sterling contributions to their adopted land. From colonial days to present, one can cite countless examples of Caribbean, Latin American and African immigrants who have made sterling contributions to US society, in fields from the arts, medicine, engineering, law, academia, the Armed Forces, and the list goes on.
  • The assumption that immigrants from these countries are overwhelmingly low-skilled is also not borne out in the data. For instance, data from the 2015 American Community Survey show that some 13.5% of the estimated 4.165 million Caribbean born US immigrants had a Bachelor’s degree and 6.7% had a graduate degree
  • Turning to Haiti in particular, President Trump’s comment shows a fundamental ignorance of the critical role Haiti played in the American colonies’ struggle for their own independence. A favour which was not returned when Haiti attained theirs given the fear that a successful black independent republic would inspire other slaves, including in the US, to follow suit.
  • The statement forgets that migration is not a one-way street. Americans too have migrated to, and made their home, in some of these same countries.

The second fundamental flaw with the statement is that it is grossly incorrect and ignores the fact that all countries have their challenges. War, conflict, Mother Nature and other factors could change a country’s fortunes at any time. The prosperous countries of today all underwent periods of time when they too could have been described in such a manner as President Trump used to describe the countries concerned. The Germany which President’s Trump grandfather fled in order to migrate to the US is not the prosperous Germany of today.

It also ignores the role external political actors have played in shaping the fate of many of these countries. For all the development aid given to countries in the Caribbean, Latin America and Africa, history is replete with examples of western powers’ interference in the domestic politics of these countries, from supporting corrupt governments to overthrowing democratically-elected left-leaning governments. These foreign interventions have undoubtedly contributed to many of the problems faced by some of these countries, including corruption, poverty and inequality.

Haiti, no doubt, is perhaps one of the more tragic examples. It is a country which is rich in culture, beauty, spirit and natural resources, and occupies a unique position in history as the world’s first majority black republic.  The colony of Saint Domingue  was the crown-jewel of the French West Indian Empire, but was almost condemned to poverty from the beginning of its post-independence life after being forced to pay France reparations for decades. And if that were not bad enough, how can one overlook US government support for the brutal Haitian dictator Francois Duvalier (Papa Doc) and his son Jean Claude Duvalier (Baby Doc) or more recently, the foreign-orchestrated removal of democratically elected leader Jean Bertrand Aristide in 2004? Moreover, the island has had more than its fair share of natural tragedy, from hurricanes to earthquakes.

The racially-charged slur attributed to the President of the United States should shock no one given his suspect history on race relations, and his ethnonationalist worldview.  It has revealed yet again the ideology underlying an increasingly more isolationist US foreign policy and immigration policy which has seen travel bans, increased deportations and the threat of ending once and for all the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme.

The biggest take-away, however, is that the inflammatory rhetoric used by the President to describe these countries is further evidence that US-Caribbean relations and US-Africa relations will not be a priority for this administration, outside of narrow US national security concerns.

Alicia Nicholls, B.Sc., M.Sc., LL.B., is a trade and development consultant with a keen interest in sustainable development, international law and trade. You can also read more of her commentaries and follow her on Twitter @LicyLaw.

Caribbean Trade and Development Digest – January 7-13, 2018

Welcome to the Caribbean Trade and Development Digest for the week of January 7-13, 2018! We are pleased to share some of the major trade and development headlines and analysis across the Caribbean region and the World. We hope you enjoy this edition.


Venezuela Extends Suspension of Air and Sea Travel, Trade with ABC Islands in Continued Fight Against Smuggling

Telesur: Venezuelan Vice President Tareck El Aissami has announced that President Nicolas Maduro has extended the suspension of air and sea traffic as well as trade with the Caribbean countries of Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao. Read more

CARICOM condemns Trump’s reported statements on Haiti

Barbados Today: The 15-nation Caribbean Community (CARICOM) says it is deeply disturbed by reports about the use of “derogatory and repulsive language” by the president of the United States with respect to its member state, Haiti, and other developing countries. Read more


Belize votes to indefinitely end all oil exploration in its waters

Inhabitat: Belize has decided to indefinitely end all new oil exploration in its waters. Belize only produces 3,000 barrels of oil a day, in contrast to the 1.5 million barrels that the United States produces each day in the Gulf of Mexico. Read more

Trade attorney warns of the need for compliance with new EU data rules

Barbados Today: Local businesses are being told to prepare themselves for new data protection regulations that will affect trade with the European Union (EU). Read more

EU to target UK ‘tax haven’ territories as trade negotiations begin

The Independent: Demands to open up Britain’s shady network of overseas tax havens are set to be used by the EU as leverage to force concessions during Brexit trade talks, The Independent understands. Read more

CAL makes triumphant first trip to Cuba

LoopTT: Caribbean Airlines landed at the Jose Marti airport in Cuba ten minutes ahead of schedule on Saturday morning as it made its first flight to the Spanish island. Read more


Viet Nam files WTO complaint over US anti-dumping duties on fish

WTO: Viet Nam has requested WTO consultations with the United States concerning certain US anti-dumping laws, regulations, administrative procedures, practices and methodologies, as well as certain anti-dumping determinations in administrative reviews on fish fillets from Viet Nam. The request was circulated to WTO members on 12 January. Read more

Canada takes US to WTO in wide-ranging trade complaint

CBC (Canada): Canada has launched a wide-ranging trade dispute against the United States, challenging Washington’s use of anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties, according to a World Trade Organization filing dated Dec. 20 and published Wednesday. Read more

Trump’s ‘Shithole’ Countries Are Worth $46.6 Billion in Trade to America

Newsweek: During a bipartisan meeting on immigration reform Thursday President Donald Trump fumed about the U.S. accepting immigrants from “shithole” countries. Yet the countries—and indeed continents—that angered him are worth billions in trade to America. Read more

Canadian officials believe that Trump is going to yank the US out of NAFTA

Business Insider: Canada is increasingly convinced that US President Donald Trump will soon announce that the United States intends to pull out of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), two government sources said on Wednesday. Read more

Brexit shock: No deal will cost EU £500billion

Sunday Express: Pressure was last night mounting on the EU to sign a free-trade agreement with Britain after a report revealed that a “no deal” scenario could cost the bloc more than £500billion. Read more

Preparations, but no NAFTA plan B yet, says trade minister

CTVNews: With the next round of NAFTA talks approaching, and uncertainty about where the U.S. stands from one day to the next, Canada’s International Trade Minister said there’s no clear “plan B” if the trilateral deal gets torn up. Read more

US looking at free trade agreement with India

Hindu Business Line: The US government is planning a comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with India in an effort to boost two-way trade that currently stands at $115 billion. Read more

Philip Hammond: Brexit trade deal without services not ‘realistic’ for UK

Politico: It is not a “realistic proposition” for the U.K. to accept a post-Brexit trade deal that does not include services and the EU would be “crazy” to cut itself off from London’s financial center, the British chancellor Philip Hammond said Saturday. Read more

Commerce submits steel imports report to Trump

Global Trade Mag: The United States Department of Commerce announced that it had submitted its report on the Section 232 investigation of steel imports to President Donald Trump. Read more

South Korea, Vietnam seek redress from US through WTO

CBC (Canada): South Korea has asked the World Trade Organization for authorisation to impose annual trade sanctions worth at least $711 million on the United States, a filing published by the World Trade Organization showed on Friday. Read more

Booming Global Trade helped China Exports Surge Last Year

Bloomberg: China’s exports rose in December, capping a year of stronger trade growth buoyed by a robust global economy. Read more

China eyes new stage of cooperation with Africa

Xinhua: With a key cooperation forum and the Belt and Road Initiative, China hopes to raise its cooperation with Africa to a new stage, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has said. Read more

US says Vietnam should have notified eight state firms to WTO

Reuters: The United States has notified the World Trade Organization of eight Vietnamese firms it says should have been registered as state trading enterprises under the global trading rules, a U.S. filing published by the WTO showed on Thursday. Read more

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Caribbean Trade and Development Digest – January 1-6, 2018

Happy New Year! Welcome to the Caribbean Trade and Development Digest for the week of January 1-6, 2018! We are pleased to share some of the major trade and development headlines and analysis across the Caribbean region and the World. We hope you enjoy this edition.


Cuba’s Raul Castro Meets Top EU Diplomat to tighten relations

TeleSur: Cuban President Raul Castro met with the European Union’s top diplomat, Federica Mogherini, at the end of her two-day visit to the country, seeking to construct and reinforce ties between EU member countries and Cuba. Read more

Exxon Mobil reports Oil Discovery off Guyana

Fox Business: Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) on Friday said it made another positive oil discovery off the coast of Guyana.  Read more

2017 gold declarations below target

Stabroek News: The Guyana Gold Board has recorded total gold declarations of 652,000 ounces for 2017, which is below the target of 720,000 ounces. Read more

Hurricane-hit Caribbean countries slash cost of Citizenship by Investment programs, says report

Nation News: Caribbean nations ravaged by recent hurricanes are selling citizenship at dramatically discounted prices in an effort to raise emergency funds, sparking concerns that the programmes may be vulnerable to abuse, according to reports here. Read more

Arrivals of US tourists to Cuba tripled in 2017

Caribbean News Digital: U.S. tourism to Cuba grew nearly threefold in 2017 over the previous year, mainly due to relaxation of travel ban, a Cuban official said Saturday. Read more

CARICOM moving to create first climate-resilient region

Jamaica Observer: Incoming chairman of the Caribbean Community (Caricom), Haiti’s President Jovenel Moïse, says the regional grouping is moving towards creating the world’s first climate-resilient region this year. Read more


Will intra-African trade flourish in 2018?

The Herald: Overcoming the barriers for intra-African trade to double in a decade can feel like a Sisyphean task – impossible to complete. But that is the objective of the Boosting Intra-African Trade (BIAT) action plan, which targets to double flows between January 2012 and January 2022. Read more

Rwanda: AU Summit to discuss Continental Free Trade Area

AllAfrica: The upcoming 30th Ordinary Session of the African Union (AU) Assembly of Heads of State and Government is expected to receive a progress report on the status of negotiations of the African Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA), an official has told Sunday Times. Read more

US Trade deficit hits $50.5 billion, biggest since 2012

ABCNews: The U.S. trade deficit rose to $50.5 billion in November, the largest imbalance in nearly six years, as imports and exports both hit records. Read more

Canada’s NAFTA charm offensive kicks into high gear

CBCNews: The new year begins with Canada relying on an old strategy for saving the North American Free Trade Agreement. Read more

UK seek free trade agreement covering goods and services in Phase Two

RTE: British Prime Minister Theresa May has said the UK will be looking for a free trade agreement with the EU that will cover goods and services in Phase Two of the Brexit negotiations this year. Read more

Tariffs to be slashed as China-Chile free trade agreement kicks in Nearly 98 percent of products traded between China and Chile will have zero tariffs attached when the new China-Chile free trade agreement is implemented in 2018, according to the Guangdong Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau, reports Read more

Will 2018 be the year of protectionism? Trump alone will decide

New York Times: The Trump administration will soon face several major trade decisions that will determine whether the White House adopts the type of protectionist barriers that President Trump campaigned on but that were largely absent during his first year in office. Read more

Will global trade survive 2018?

Foreign Policy (Blog): The future of the global trade system faces more risk and uncertainty than at any time since it was created after World War II. Read more

Macron pursues ambitious agenda on first official China visit

RFI: French president, Emmanuel Macron’s heads to China Sunday hoping to forge closer ties with President Xi Jinping. During the three-day trip which begins Monday, Macron plans to seek a “strategic partnership” with Beijing, notably on terrorism and climate change, an official in the president’s office said. Read more

Why Britain should be allowed to join the TPP

The Strait Times: Analysis by James Crabtree Read more

US-Korea trade talks pit pickup trucks against nuclear threat

Reuters: The United States and South Korea on Friday completed the first round of review talks on a bilateral trade deal with Washington saying there was “much work to do” to reach a new pact.  Read more

Will there be a Pacific trade war in 2018?

Nikkei Asian Review: Analysis by Glen Fukushima Read more

New Chinese consul general talks tough on trade

Business in Vancouver: China is eager to conclude a free-trade agreement with Canada, but not at the expense of a set of “baseline” political principles seen as untouchable by Beijing, said the new top Chinese diplomat in the Western Canada region. Read more

How Nepal’s trade costs could be minimised

The Himalayan Times: A recent report jointly prepared by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific (UNESCAP) titled ‘Trade and Transport Facilitation Monitoring Mechanism (TTFMM) in Nepal’ has suggested the government to set up the TTFMM institutional mechanism to monitor processes in certification, customs, transit and cargo transportation to bring down the cost of trade. Read more

Brexit: UK Government considers joining TPP trade agreement to help bolster economy after leaving EU

The Independent: Britain is exploring the possibility of joining a trans-Pacific trade bloc after Brexit in a bid to find alternative markets for exports that currently go to Europe, it has emerged. Read more

Brexit: May urged to stay in the single market by 20 British MEPs

The Guardian: Theresa May is being urged to change course and seek full membership of the European single market and customs union by 20 British MEPs, including three Tories and the majority of Labour politicians based in Brussels. Read more

Pressure grows for UK to bring ban on ivory trade

The Guardian: Consultation by the government shows huge public support for ending all sales. Read more

More than 2,300 EU academics resign amid warning over UK university ‘Brexodus’

The Independent: New figures show a 19 per cent increase in departures of European staff from universities last year compared to before the EU referendum, and a 10 per cent rise from some 2130 resignations in 2015-16. Read more

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