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Maria Persson participates in WTO discussion

Maria Persson, part-time researcher at IFN, has been invited by the World Trade Organization to participate in an expert group meeting to discuss the WTO World Trade Report 2011 (next annual report). Maria Persson´s colleague Yves Bourdet will also take part.

This year´s WTO trade report will focus on preferential trade agreements. Maria Persson and Yves Bourdet have published a summary of a research paper on this intensively discussed subject, available on the WTO website. They argue that though the European Union is a customs union, Member States still impose different administrative procedures with which exporters need to comply. This increases costs for companies exporting from outside the EU as their goods wait for customs approval at the border.

Maria Persson and Yves Bourdet argue that for the EU to live up to its ambition of being a fully-fledged customs union, it needs to harmonize its customs procedures. From an economic perspective, the ideal way forward would be to adopt the standards set by the most efficient member states to the rest of the EU.

Read the authors’ contribution.

The research contribution is a summary based on the research pape ”Completing the EU Customs Union. The Effects of Trade Procedure Harmonization”, forthcoming in JCMS, Journal of Common Market Studies, Vol. 50, No. 3, 2012.

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