Vinod K. Aggarwal and Simon J. Evenett
The TTIP in a Multipolar World, Farnham, UK: Ashgate Publishing, 2015
The first section of this chapter explores the relationship among different elements of trade agreements such as issue scope, the strength of agreements, the degree of liberalism in the accord and other relevant dimensions and characterizes TTIP using these yardsticks. The second section describes five different means by which the provisions of a possible TTIP accord could spread, taking account of the incentives faced by third parties. Since four of those five means do not involve third parties joining TTIP, we challenge the implicit assumption that third parties will necessarily throw themselves at the mercy of US and EU trade negotiators to align with TTIP’s new rules for commerce. The third section explores other past examples of trade agreements to consider the different modalities by which norms and rules might spread in practice. Our conclusion argues that the view of some that TTIP’s 21st century new rules and regulatory approaches will lead to greater uniformity in the architecture of trade accords may be incorrect. Instead, such mega-free trade agreements (FTAs) could well contribute to the further fragmentation of the world trading system in ways going beyond those we have previously articulated (Aggarwal and Evenett 2013).