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Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report 2013

Turning the Tide - Towards Inclusive Trade and Investment

image of Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report 2013
The main message of the Report is that the region's dominant export-led growth model should not be abandoned but does need some adjustment. While regional economies have largely succeeded in achieving sustained economic growth, additional policies are required to spread the benefits of that growth more fairly: to reduce poverty, limit rises in inequality, widen access to productive opportunities and bring excluded groups in from the margins. It is not enough simply to hope that rising wealth will eventually work for the benefit of all. The era of trade and invest now, distribute gains later has thus come to its end; we need to promote inclusive trade and investment.

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Recent trade policy developments: A mixed picture

Governments have been actively using various trade policy instruments in the aftermath of the global financial crisis but there has not been a widespread resort to protectionism. The result has been a mix of trade protectionism and trade promotion. This chapter explores how Governments in Asia and the Pacific adjusted the scale and composition of their trade policies in response to the uncertainties present in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. It also looks at the rationales behind these adjustments. The impact of some of these measures on trade flows and affected sectors are assessed. This evaluation is complemented by an Index of Protectionism Severity, which aims to provide a simple measure of the impact of protectionist policies.

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