Philippine trade policy options
Medalla, Erlinda M.
Pante, Filologo Jr.
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This paper explores trade options for the Philippines in the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations. We do not purport to be exhaustive in identifying a wide range of alternatives nor do we claim to have the best ideas about the stance the country should take in the Negotiations. The specific objectives of this paper are: (a) to review the trade experience of the Philippines; (b) to indicate some policy options in the context of the Uruguay Round; (c) to describe the products or markets which have apparent i m p o r t a n c e t o the Philippines in the present Round/ the priorities the country can take, and the new issues that will be covered in the Round; and (d) to suggest some strategies which can be pursued by the Philippines in the Round. In order to provide the perspective within which the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and the Uruguay Round must be viewed, the next sector briefly reviews the trade experience of the Philippines, focusing mainly on the evolution of the trade structure and trade performance over time. Section 3 subsequently discusses GATT and the Philippine's role in it, particularly in the last round of multilateral negotiations. Section 4 zeroes in on the Uruguay Round, why it is important for the Philippines, what the Philippines' priorities in the Round should be, what political coalitions the Philippines is participating in and what new issues are included in the Round and how Philippine interests are affected by these. The following section outlines an agenda for the negotiations under the Uruguay Round, highlighting options and strategies. Section 6 concludes the paper.