Trade

Globalization-related issues.

The Indian Economy at a Crossroads

January 22, 2015 - 7:00pm - 8:30pm
The Oberoi Hotel
Dr. Zakir Hussain Marg
Nilgiri Room
New Delhi
India

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s first eight months in office has brought a reenergized focus toward boosting Indian economic growth. Read more »

Chinese Tech Firms Can Avoid the Galapagos Effect that Got Japan

China Daily
Chris Davis discusses ITIF’s new policy report on China’s use of indigenous technology standards.

ITIF Commends Department of Commerce for New Solar Energy Tariffs

The Necessity of Trade Promotion Authority

December 17, 2014
| Blogs & Op-eds

TPA allows the President to “fast-track” trade agreements for approval or disapproval by Congress. As the United States is engaged in negotiating, in the words of Deputy United States Trade Representative Robert Holleyman, “the most ambitious trade agenda in history,” the necessity of TPA could not be clearer.

Negotiators fail to reach deal on expanded high-tech agreement

The Hill
An expanded ITA would have represented the first significant multilateral tariff-elimination deal in years and been a boon for the global economy, says Stephen Ezell.

The Middle Kingdom Galapagos Island Syndrome: The Cul-De-Sac of Chinese Technology Standards

December 15, 2014
| Reports

Read the Chinese translation of the executive summary.

China has made the development of indigenous technology standards, particularly for information and communications technology (ICT) products, a core component of its industrial development strategy. China has done so believing that indigenous technology standards will advantage China's domestic producers while blocking foreign competitors and reducing royalties that Chinese firms pay for foreign technologies. But, by using indigenous rather than global technology standards for ICT products, China risks engendering a “Galapagos Island” effect that isolates Chinese ICT products, technologies, and markets from global norms, as Japan experienced to the significant detriment of its ICT sector.

This report explains why the development and adoption of global, interoperable technology standards matters. It then explores Japan’s experience with the “Galapagos Island Syndrome,” explaining how that nation’s isolation from global technology markets ultimately inflicted significant damage to an industry that had once been among Japan’s most vibrant.

The report then turns to examining China’s standards development approach and identifies four central shortcomings: 1) it risks picking the wrong standard; 2) it risks delays in standards development (often caused by bureaucratic inefficiency or rivalry) that cause both missed market and economic growth opportunities; 3) it encourages a belief that Chinese markets alone are of sufficient scale; and most importantly 4) even when and if it does succeed in developing indigenous standards, it risks the Galapagos Island  effect that isolates China’s ICT products and markets from global ones. 

The report concludes by offering recommendations for how China can improve its approach to standards development in a way that benefits China’s ICT enterprises, China’s consumers of ICT products, and even the broader global economy. Among other recommendations, it notes that:

  • China should adopt an “open participation model” in product standards development processes and frameworks that is transparent, open, and non-discriminatory for all stakeholders.

  • China should remove policies that inappropriately withhold access to standards-development organizations (SDOs) or other Chinese standards-making forums based on where a company or organization is headquartered.

  • China should align its standards (including national, industrial, and provincial standards) with international standards and use international standards as the basis of Chinese standards and regulations wherever practical. China should not make minor alterations to existing international standards with the intent of developing a China-only standard. 

  • Technology that is not developed or registered in China should still be considered for inclusion in Chinese standards. 

  • Wherever the majority of the rest of a global industry sector has developed a voluntary consensus standardization forum as the preferred venue for the development of certain ICT standards, Chinese industry should join the rest of the sector in the development and use of those standards.

China’s ICT Standards Policy Risks Global Technology Isolation

Choosing Growth Over Protectionism

December 12, 2014
| Blogs & Op-eds

Brazil narrowly chose to reelect President Dilma Rousseff, and now she has an important choice to make about the future of Brazil’s economy: whether to take the necessary action to get Brazil’s economy back on track. Here’s an easy place to start: eliminate all tariffs and discriminatory taxes on information and communications technology (ICT) products and services.

Time for A Global Mercantilist Index

December 11, 2014
| Blogs & Op-eds

In order for the U.S. to take the lead in more effectively combating foreign mercantilism, it is time for Congress to provide the charge and the resources to the United States Trade Representative to develop an annual comprehensive ranking of nations’ mercantilist policies; in other words, a “Global Mercantilist Index”. ITIF's “Global Mercantilist Index” (GMI) uses a new comprehensive method to rank nations on mercantilist policies, while also proposing new policy tools to address the problem.

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