This paper contains further work by the Fund staff on trade issues and developments following the pattern of the surveys prepared in 1978 and 1981, mainly focusing on commercial policies of the major trading nations. It also includes a discussion of agricultural protection and issues relating to international trade in agricultural products.
In late 1979, the African Center for Monetary Studies requested, on behalf of the Association of African Central Banks (AACB), that the Fund staff prepare a study describing the existing payments, exchange control, and exchange rate arrangements in the proposed 17-nation Preferential Trade Area (PTA) of Eastern and Southern African States, analyzing any payments obstacles to trade in the region, and recommending improvements in payments arrangements that would promote intraregional trade.
This study reviews recent developments in international trade policies in selected industrial countries. It was prepared for the June 1981 World Economic Outlook.
The continued drift toward protectionism poses a threat to the balanced expansion of world trade in the medium term and to the prospects for suśtaining economic recovery. In the past several years, most industrial countries have become more protectionist than before, despite the continued tariff cuts of the Tokyo Round and limited instances of liberalization of nontariff barriers.
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