A CHARACTERISATION OF ENVIORNMENTAL LABELLING AND INFORMATION SCHEMES. By Guillaume Gruère for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). (October 2013) This working paper provides an overview of the current landscape of environmental labelling and information schemes (ELIS). It reviews initiatives and actors, identifies a list of these schemes' critical characteristics, and analyses their growth, using a dataset of 544 schemes across 197 countries that were introduced between 1970 and 2012. Among other findings, the report supports a rapid increase in the number of ELIS. At the same time, the figures suggest that this growth might have slowed since 2010. The analysis also describes both the diversity and unequal growth of ELIS, using various characteristics. The full report is available online.
GENETICALLY MODIFIED CROPS IN AFRICA: ECONOMIC AND POLICY LESSONS FROM COUNTRIES SOUTH OF THE SAHARA. Edited by José Falck-Zepeda, Guillaume Gruère, and Idah Sithole Niang for the International Food Policy Research Institute. (October 2013) This book investigates how genetically modified (GM) crops might be used most effectively by evaluating the benefits, costs, and risks for African countries of adopting such crops. The book includes studies on their economic effects at the farm level, their impact on trade, or how consumers view such crops. The book concludes that, based on available evidence, GM crops have had, on average, a positive economic effect in the nations where they were used and it identifies future steps for enhancing GM crop adoption's positive effects. The full report is available online.
INVESTMENT AGREEMENTS VERSUS THE RULE OF LAW? By Todd Tucker for the UN Conference on Trade and Development's (UNCTAD) Division on Investment and Enterprise. (October 2013) This UNCTAD "Featured Discussion" reviews recent international arbitration cases in which the government conduct challenged by the claimant investor is the decision of domestic judiciaries. It looks at how this may affect notions of branch autonomy and separation of power. The report includes a series of case studies, such as the Chevron v. Ecuador dispute. The author discusses these cases and their implications for the future of development and of international investment arbitration. To read more, please click here.
LOCAL CONTENT REQUIREMENTS: A GLOBAL PROBLEM. By Gary Clyde Hufbauer, Jeffery J. Schott, Cathleen Cimino, Martin Vieiro, and Erika Wada for the Peterson Institute for International Economics. (September 2013) Using a combination of statistical analyses and case studies, the authors contend that local content requirements (LCRs), a specific form of non-tariff barrier, have become increasingly popular during the recent recession. The authors estimate that such barriers may have cost an estimated US$93 billion in reduced global trade. The case studies include impact of LCRs on the healthcare sector in Brazil, wind turbines in Canada, the automobile industry in China, solar cells and modules in India, oil and gas in Nigeria, and from "Buy American" restrictions on government procurement in the United States. To purchase the book, or to preview it online, click here.