Synthesis and Recommendation, New Age FTAs: Is the Philippines Mature Enough?
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Synthesis and Recommendation, New Age FTAs: Is the Philippines Mature Enough?

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New Age FTAs: Is the Philippines Mature Enough?

New Age FTAs: Is the Philippines Mature Enough?
Synthesis and Recommendation
Erlinda M. Medalla
Feb 10, 2012
Dusit Hotel

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Synthesis and Recommendation, New Age FTAs: Is the Philippines Mature Enough? Synthesis and Recommendation, New Age FTAs: Is the Philippines Mature Enough? Presentation Transcript

  • New Age FTAs: Is the Philippines Mature Enough? Synthesis and Recommendation Erlinda M. Medalla Feb. 10, 2011 Dusit Hotel
  • New Age FTA: Is the Philippines mature enough?Differentiate with: whether forging such FTAswould be beneficial.• Mature enough to study and recognize benefits and costs?• Mature enough to get a good deal? Deal with domestic concerns on the one hand and negotiate wisely with prospective partners?• Mature enough to take advantage of opportunities and overcome challenges?
  • Mature enough to take advantage ofopportunities and overcome challenges?• While important, the first two are not the more critical issues: – Thailand has become a ‘pro’, Indonesian learned quickly, Philippines has learning experience from PJEPA – This workshop is also a good indicator• Third is much more difficult and ambitious. This is the bottom line.
  • ‘New Age FTAs’• Free flow of goods, services and investment. Cooperation elements and capacity building• It’s not just about trade and market access.• Ultimately, it’s about economic reforms: for both or all partners• This is well recognized in the case of Korea: the main objectives of FTAs are: – To secure market access and (2) to enhance transparency and predictability.• This is true as well in the case of Japan- also for domestic reforms.
  • Impact on Governance• two way: – good governance would help maximize benefits from FTAs – at the same time, FTAs could contribute to good governance (not just because of the need for it , made even more obvious and urgent because of joining an FTA, but because of the development cooperation initiatives ‘new age’ FTAs make possible.• This is especially true for regional FTAs- with added peer pressure to implement reforms. Learn from best practice
  • Impact on Governance• Examples that this is happening are in the areas discussed in this workshop: customs administration and competition policy• In customs –National Single Window, eventually leading to the ASEAN single window – very much a part of good governance. – The Philippines is hard pressed to make headway in customs reforms.• ASEAN cooperation in competition policy• These are two very difficult areas for reforms• FTAs- Use in conjunction with strategic industrial policy – Not just as defensive mechanism
  • Concluding Remarks• It is not just about trade and market access. It is also very much about economic reforms and improving governance• Consistency with WTO in the long-run should always be kept in mind.• Managing risks to ensure FTAs become building blocs
  • Recommendations• Improve intra and intergovernmental coordination mechanisms for coordinated policy decision making process;• Enhance participation of private sector through business advocacy, consultation, observer status in negotiations; and• Networking of negotiators, academe/experts and business/industry sector as well as civil society• Linked with call for increased transparency
  • Recommendations• Continue domestic reforms – infrastructure and logistics, trade facilitation• Need for capacity building, information and advocacy- – Research – Advocacy– information and education – Negotiating capability—HB 56?