Social Standards in EU and US Trade Agreements

Evgeny Postnikov

Routledge | Published : 2020


This book examines the causes and consequences of social standards in US and EU preferential trade agreements (PTAs). PTAs are the new reality of the global trading system. Pursued by both developed and developing countries, they increasingly incorporate labor and environmental issues to prevent a race to the bottom in social regulation and counter-protectionism. Using principal-agent theory to explore why US PTAs have stricter social standards than those signed by the EU, Postnikov argues that the level of institutional insulation of trade policy executives from interest groups and legislators determines the design of social standards. In the EU, where institutional insulation is high, soci..

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