An Analysis of U.S. Strategy in Aid-for-Trade

Job hunting in Japan is a huge event. I, along with a vast majority of my peers in their senior year have just gone through this opportunity to get up to date on where the private enterprises’ focuses are (thinking positively). In going to countless company seminars and in viewing dozens of company pamphlets/webpages, I noticed nearly all emphasized how “global” they were: how much of their revenue comes from abroad, how many of their people work abroad, how they rely on economic growth in developing countries to grow their own companies, etc. This reality, perhaps more than my studies focusing on trade over the last year, made me realize how much we rely on globalized supply chains and overseas demand. It also made me realize the vastness of the impact increased trade can have on our economy. This can surely be applied to the U.S. as well.

However, there are obstacles to international trade. Tariffs and Rules of Origin have been in the spotlight over the past years. On the other hand, the lowering of these barriers, especially for the U.S. which hasn’t successfully negotiated an EPA since 2007, is at a stand-still. An alternative way to increase trade is trade facilitation: improving port facilities, customs procedures, and regulations. The effects of these measures have been quantified mainly over the past decade, reporting large numbers. By using econometric tools based on past research, I will assess the impact of investing in aid for trade facilitation of foreign countries specifically on U.S. trade. Contrasting my results and its policy implications with current U.S. investment numbers in Aid-For-Trade to respective sectors countries released in the OECD creditor reporting system, the most effective investment strategy for stimulating the U.S. economy can be suggested.

I look forward to our discussions!

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