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International Trade Series
International trade
History of international trade
Political views
Fair trade
Trade justice
Free trade
Protectionism
Economic integration
Preferential trading area
Free trade area
Customs union
Single market
Economic and monetary union
Complete economic integration
Other
Trade pact
Trade bloc
Trade creation
Trade diversion

A trade bloc is a type of intergovernmental agreement, often part of a regional intergovernmental organization, where regional barriers to trade (tariffs and non-tariff barriers) are reduced or eliminated among the participating states.[1]

Contents

Description

One of the first economic blocs was the German Customs Union (Zollverein) initiated in 1834, formed on the basis of the German Confederation and subsequently German Empire from 1871. Surges of trade bloc formation were seen in the 1960s and 1970s, as well as in the 1990s after the collapse of Communism. By 1997, more than 50% of all world commerce was conducted under the auspices of regional trade blocs.[2] Economist Jeffrey J. Scott of the Peterson Institute for International Economics notes that members of successful trade blocs usually share four common traits: similar levels of per capita GNP, geographic proximity, similar or compatible trading regimes, and political commitment to regional organization.[3]

Advocates of worldwide free trade are generally opposed to trading blocs, which, they argue, encourage regional as opposed to global free trade.[4] Scholars and economists continue to debate whether regional trade blocs are leading to a more fragmented world economy or encouraging the extension of the existing global multilateral trading system.[5][6] Trade blocs can be stand-alone agreements between several states (such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or part of a regional organization (such as the European Union). Depending on the level of economic integration, trade blocs can fall into different categories, such as:[7] preferential trading areas, free trade areas, customs unions, common markets and economic and monetary unions.

List of trade blocs

This list is based on the data obtained from  United Nations Statistics Division.

Trade bloc Population Gross domestic product (USD) Members
2006 2007 growth per capita
Economic and monetary unions
CEMAC 39,278,645 51,265,460,685 58,519,380,755 14.15% 1,490
EMU 324,879,195 10,685,946,928,310 12,225,304,229,686 14.41% 37,630
OECS 593,905 3,752,679,562 3,998,281,731 6.54% 6,732
OII 504,476 12,264,278,329 14,165,953,200 15.51% 28,081
UEMOA 90,299,945 50,395,629,494 58,453,871,283 15.99% 647
Common markets
CACM 37,388,063 87,209,524,889 97,718,800,794 12.05% 2,614
CAN 96,924,486 281,269,141,372 334,172,968,648 18.81% 3,448
CCCM 6,418,417 39,616,485,623 43,967,600,765 10.98% 6,850
EEA 499,620,521 14,924,076,504,592 17,186,876,431,709 15.16% 34,400
Customs unions
EAC 127,107,838 49,882,030,443 61,345,180,041 22.98% 483
EAEC 207,033,990 1,125,634,333,117 1,465,256,182,498 30.17% 7,077
EUCU 574,602,745 15,331,827,900,202 17,679,376,474,719 15.31% 30,768
GCC 36,154,528 724,460,151,595 802,641,302,477 10.79% 22,200
MERCOSUR 55,681,675 277,544,834,196 305,692,671,540 10.14% 5,490
SACU 268,445,656 1,499,811,549,187 1,848,337,158,281 23.24% 6,885
Free trade areas
AANZFTA-ASEAN+3 2,085,858,841 10,216,029,899,764 11,323,947,181,804 10.84% 5,429
ALADI 499,807,662 2,823,198,095,131 3,292,088,771,480 16.61% 6,587
AFTZ 553,915,405 643,541,709,413 739,927,625,273 14.98% 1,336
APTA 2,714,464,027 4,868,614,302,744 5,828,692,637,764 19.72% 2,147
CARIFORUM-EUCU-OCTs 592,083,950 15,437,771,092,522 17,798,283,524,961 15.29% 30,060
CEFTA 27,968,711 110,263,802,023 135,404,501,031 22.80% 4,841
CISFTA 272,897,834 1,271,909,586,018 1,661,429,920,721 30.62% 6,088
DR-CAFTA-US 356,964,477 13,345,469,865,037 14,008,686,684,089 4.97% 39,244
ECOWAS 283,096,250 215,999,071,943 255,784,634,128 18.42% 904
EFTA-SACU 68,199,991 1,021,509,931,918 1,139,385,636,888 11.54% 16,707
NAFTA 449,227,672 15,337,094,304,218 16,189,097,801,318 5.56% 36,038
TPP 25,639,622 401,810,366,865 468,101,167,294 16.50% 18,257
SAARC 1,567,187,373 1,162,684,650,544 1,428,392,756,312 22.85% 911
SPARTECA 35,079,659 918,557,785,031 1,102,745,750,172 20.05% 31,435

Notes

  1. ^ Schott 1991, 1.
  2. ^ Milner 2002, 450.
  3. ^ Schott 1991, 2.
  4. ^ O'Loughlin and Anselin 1996, 136.
  5. ^ Milner 2002, 458.
  6. ^ Mansfield and Milner 2005, 330.
  7. ^ Mansfield and Milner 2005, 333.

Bibliography

  • Mansfield, Edward D. and Helen V. Milner, "The New Wave of Regionalism" in Diehl, Paul F. (2005). The Politics of Global Governance: International Organizations in an Interdependent World. Boulder: Lynne Rienner Publishers. ISBN 1-555876-544. 
  • Milner, Helen V., "International Trade" in Carlsnaes, Walter; Thomas Risse, Beth A. Simmons (2002). Handbook of International Relations. London: SAGE Publications. ISBN 0-761963-049. 
  • O'Loughlin, John; Luc Anselin (1996). "Geo-Economic Competition and Trade Bloc Formation: United States, German, and Japanese Exports, 1968-1992". Economic Geography 72 (2): 131–160. 
  • Schott, Jeffrey J. (1991). "Trading blocs and the world trading system". World Economy 14 (1): 1–17. 

See also








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