Hope Springs Eternal
The Stan Kelly Lecture
Dr Craig Emerson
Director, Australian APEC Study Centre
On 28 June 2023, Dr Craig Emerson, Director of The Australian APEC Study Centre at RMIT University, delivered the Stan Kelly memorial lecture at a gathering of the Economic Society of Australia's Victorian Branch.
Dr Emerson warned that the global trading system was at its greatest risk since the formation of the GATT in 1948.
Superpower rivalry and a return to protectionism in the United States had led to a breakdown in adherence to WTO rules.
Ongoing geopolitical tensions have resulted in breaches of the WTO rules with no sanctions, since the WTO’s Appellate Body is no longer functioning.
Dr Emerson recommends the pursuit of plurilateral agreements within the WTO and, if necessary, within APEC.
These plurilateral agreements would be pursued by like-minded countries. They would be open plurilaterals, enabling other countries to join if and when they can match the level of ambition in an agreement.
The full lecture can be viewed below.