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RESEARCH AND ANALYSIS:  WORKING PAPERS
Discriminatory consequences of non-discriminatory standards

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Number: TISD-96-001
 

Author
Aaditya Mattoo
World Trade Organization
 

Publishing date: August 1996


Abstract
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This paper shows that environmental, labour and other standards can be effective strategic policy instruments even when they are strictly non-discriminatory. This is because standards can be set which the low cost producer optimally chooses not to meet, allowing the high cost producer to monopolize the standardized segment of the market. Thus, it is important for policy to consider how much scope there should be for the imposition of unilaterally determined standards
which could impact negatively on trading partners even when they are non-discriminatory rather than internationally negotiated standards.
 

Keywords
Standards; Oligopoly; Strategic trade policy; Environment


JEL codes
[F12, L13]

Download paper in MS Word format (567 KB, 37 pages)

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