Multilateral Investment Agreement in the WTO: Issues and Illusions

By Kavaljit Singh | APRN-PIRC Briefing Paper | 2003

This paper is an in-depth investigation of attempts made by a select grouping of developed world to widen the scope of trade negotiations to new issues, particularly investments, at the Fifth Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO) held at Cancun, Mexico in September 2003.

Current approaches advocating international investment agreements are grounded on several myths. There is no evidence to prove conclusively that investment agreements lead to increased foreign investment in all countries. Nor does it boost the prospects of obtaining investment in future. Since the 1980s, a…

From Beijing Consensus to Washington Consensus (II)
China’s Financial Sector under the WTO Regime: A Preliminary Assessment

By Kavaljit Singh | January 2003

China became a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on 11 December 2001. To facilitate its entry into WTO, China agreed to undertake a series of important market access commitments to open and liberalize its financial sector.

These commitments will allow foreign banks to capture markets in those regions (e.g., coastal regions and cities) where bulk of banking business is concentrated. Given the fact that foreign banks have considerable international exposure and can launch new products and services, they are in a better position to capture China’s banking markets,…

From Beijing Consensus to Washington Consensus: China’s Journey to Liberalization and Globalization (I)

By Kavaljit Singh | Asia-Pacific Journal, Issue No.7 | December 2002

China’s massive transformation from a centrally planned economy to a market economy has received worldwide attention. There is a strong tendency among many commentators to equate China’s economic liberalization program with neoliberal Washington Consensus based on rapid privatization, deregulation and globalization policies. It would be erroneous to equate Chinese journey towards economic reforms with Washington Consensus because the country followed a sequential approach to economic liberalization rather than a blanket approach adopted by several third world countries, former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in the eighties and the nineties. Economic…

Global Corporate Power: Emerging Trends and Issues

By Kavaljit Singh | ASED-PIRC Briefing Paper | July 2001

In the last two decades, economic clout of global corporations has scaled unprecedented heights. Does this suggest the end of nation-states? Not at all, says the author. With the help of contemporary examples, the author argues that the role of state has been critical in shaping the present trajectory of corporate-led global economy.

This paper critically examines in detail two most controversial and complex issues related to TNCs namely, mergers and acquisitions and transfer pricing. The author calls upon anti-corporate activists and movements to rethink their strategies in order to…

Tax Financial Speculation: The Case for a Securities Transaction Tax in India

By Kavaljit Singh | ASED-PIRC Briefing Paper | January 2001

Indian financial markets are among the most speculative and volatile in the world. To curb unproductive speculation and excessive volatility, the author proposes a Securities Transaction Tax (STT) of 0.25 per cent. The author argues that the wider economic and developmental gains of taxing speculative money in stock markets are more than the private gains of a handful of speculators, financiers and traders.

The paper provides legitimate grounds for imposing a STT on Indian financial markets. It underscores the point that the obstacles to put restrictions on speculative trading are…