Did the Protectionist Dog Bark? Transparency, Accountability, and the WTO During the Global Financial Crisis
Policy Report, March 2011
16 Pages Posted: 6 Apr 2011
Date Written: March 30, 2011
Leaders of the G20 promised repeatedly that they would refrain from trade restrictions in response to the global financial crisis that began in 2008, and that they would minimize the negative impact on trade and investment of stimulus measures. They also promised to hold themselves accountable for this commitment using a novel transparency mechanism based in the World Trade Organization. At the same time, the Global Trade Alert set itself up as an alternative accountability mechanism. A detailed comparison first of GTA and WTO data on the number of measures each found, and second, of their ability to offer robust interpretations of the measures, allows both a check on the official story, and a consideration of how transparency can help to close the gap between commitment and action, thereby contributing to accountable global governance.
Keywords: WTO, Institutions, Transparency, Accountability, Trade, Protectionism, Financial Crisis
JEL Classification: F13
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation