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  • Author: Hongying Wang
  • Publication Date: 03-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: In recent years, the world has seen rapid growth in China’s financial reach beyond its borders. Following the announcement of a “going out” strategy at the turn of the century, many Chinese enterprises have ventured to invest and operate abroad. After three decades as primarily a recipient of foreign direct investment (FDI), China has now emerged as a major FDI-originating country as well. Much of China’s foreign aid is closely entangled with its outgoing FDI, and it has also been rising. Since 2013, the Chinese government has been pushing for a new One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative, aiming to connect China with countries along the ancient Silk Road and a new Maritime Silk Road via infrastructure investment. In addition, since 2009, China has actively promoted the internationalization of its currency, the renminbi (RMB). There has been a great deal of anxiety about the motivations behind China’s going out policy and its possible international consequences. Many view it as an expression of China’s international ambition and a strategy that threatens the existing international order; however, that is not the whole story. An equally important but often less understood issue is the role of China’s domestic politics and political economy in shaping its new activism in foreign financial policy. Moreover, it is unclear how successful the going out policy is. The complexity of China’s going out policy was the topic for a recent round table discussion hosted by the Centre for International Governance Innovation and the Foreign Policy Institute at the School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University in Washington, DC.[1] Participants discussed a number of issues around two broad themes: the impact of domestic political economy on China’s foreign economic policy and the challenges for China’s external financial strategy — in particular, its OBOR initiative.
  • Topic: Markets, Political Economy, Monetary Policy, Infrastructure, Foreign Direct Investment, Financial Markets
  • Political Geography: China
  • Author: Patricia Goff
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) is noteworthy for the expanded role that Canadian provinces and territories played in the negotiation. In this particular instance, these sub-federal actors had a seat at the negotiating table at the request of their European Union partners. However, this paper argues that CETA is exceptional in this regard. Despite the fact that regional trade agreements increasingly contain provisions that relate to areas of provincial and territorial jurisdiction, each trade negotiation is distinct. The CETA experience should not create the expectation that provinces and territories will always participate in the same capacity. Any enhanced role will depend on the federal government’s strategic assessment of any specific trade negotiation.
  • Topic: International Trade and Finance, Markets, Political Economy, Treaties and Agreements, Regulation
  • Political Geography: Canada, European Union
  • Author: John Whalley, Daqing Yao
  • Publication Date: 03-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The effects of the termination of the Multifibre Arrangement (MFA) on the trade of clothing and textiles are assessed in this paper, based on world trade date and US trade data. The findings from the data analyzed indicate that the effects of the termination of the MFA on the clothing trade was more significant for clothing than for the textiles trade. With the end of the MFA, the freer trade in these sectors shed light on other sectors that are still protected under trade agreements.
  • Topic: International Trade and Finance, Markets, Treaties and Agreements, Regulation
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Patrick Leblond
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) is possibly the most ambitious regional free trade agreement that Canada and the European Union have negotiated so far. One of its main components is a chapter that seeks to liberalize trade and investment in financial services between Canada and the European Union, while ensuring that markets and their agents will be properly regulated and protected through prudential regulation. However, this chapter is unlikely to have a significant impact on the financial services sector in Canada and the European Union in the short and medium term. Although some observers fear that CETA might undermine the high quality of financial regulations in Canada or the European Union, this paper’s analysis demonstrates that such concerns are unfounded.
  • Topic: International Trade and Finance, Markets, Treaties and Agreements, Regulation
  • Political Geography: Canada, European Union
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: This paper analyzes the impact of four major financial sector sustainability codes of conduct, the UN Environmental Programme Finance Initiative, the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, the Equator Principles and the Global Alliance for Banking on Values with regard to their impact on the sustainability of their members. The codes of conduct focus on the integration of environmental, social and governance criteria into financial decision making in lending, investment, asset management and project finance. corporate sustainability voluntary codes of conduct have a positive impact on their members. The effectiveness, however, depends on the quality and content of a code, as well as on implementation and compliance mechanisms.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Markets, United Nations, Ethics
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Şebnem Kalemli-Özcan
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: This paper shows that debt flows have contractionary effects on emerging markets' output, while equity flows have expansionary effects. Such correlations can be driven by counter-cyclical debt flows and pro-cyclical equity flows, or by debt flows that lead to an appreciation and hurt exports, and by equity flows that improve the productivity of the real economy, broadly defined. It focuses on business cycle frequencies and the effect of global risk appetite in driving capital flows into emerging markets. A positive initial impact of debt flows on output is followed by a negative impact. Equity flows have a positive impact on output initially, and thereafter. Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows have a positive effect on output only after a two-year lag, and if this period coincides with increased global uncertainty, the effect on output reverses, but the total effect stays positive. This result also holds for equity flows, suggesting that during increased periods of uncertainty, private investors leave emerging markets. Quantitative impacts are not large except in the case of FDI flows.
  • Topic: Markets
  • Author: Andrew Sheng
  • Publication Date: 06-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: Central banks, when purchasing financial assets, should consider selecting assets that will promote sustainability, including climate change mitigation and adaptation. During the 2008 financial crisis, central banks deployed unconventional means to rescue failing banks and insulate economies from depression. Their asset purchases have had strong social impacts, but traditionally, central banks have not explicitly factored social objectives into their decisions or evaluated their impacts beyond the narrow monetary domain. Social impact investing is consistent with a central bank’s mandate to maintain price stability, but those not yet ready to move in this direction should at least incentivize bankers and asset managers to invest in, or lend to, climate mitigation activities and low-emission growth, as well as support a financial transaction tax.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Energy Policy, Environment, Markets, Monetary Policy, Financial Markets
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Oonagh Fitzgerald, Karima Bawa, David Estrin, Kent Howe, Dean MacDougall, Myra J. Tawfik, Basil Ugochukwu, Bassem Awad
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The International Law Research Program (ILRP) of the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) congratulates the Province of Ontario’s Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change for launching a province-wide public consultation process — Ontario’s Climate Change Discussion Paper 2015 — in relation to an issue of global importance and urgency for Ontarians and Canadians alike, at a time when nations need to galvanize their subnationals, climate experts, civil society, business and industry to commit to intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate the effects of climate change. The CIGI ILRP is optimistic that through this provincial consultation process and implementation of the best ideas it generates, as well as through Ontario’s initiatives undertaken in collaboration with other provinces and foreign subnationals, Canadians will be able to prove to the world our commitment to make a meaningful contribution to achieving an ambitious, verifiable and enforceable international agreement on climate change in December 2015 in Paris. By proactively addressing climate change now, the Government of Ontario positions this province, its citizens, universities and businesses to be innovators for sustainable prosperity rather than victims of global environmental and economic crisis.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Climate Change, Economics, Energy Policy, Environment, Markets, Natural Resources
  • Political Geography: Canada
  • Author: Jason Thistlethwaite
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: In recent years, a plurality of different governance initiatives has emerged that are designed to expand the disclosure of environmental risk within financial markets. The emergence of these initiatives represents an important policy development, and it has the potential to reduce environmental risk within the financial sector by incentivizing investments in sustainable economic activity capable of long-term value creation. Unfortunately, environmental risk disclosure has yet to be assessed as a field of governance activity in addition to its potential effectiveness in improving disclosure within financial markets. This paper addresses this gap by describing environmental risk disclosure as a “regime complex” that is defined by a field of fragmented but related governance initiatives that lacks an overarching hierarchy. While this regime complex does reveal evidence for policy convergence among different initiatives, it lacks the enforcement necessary to produce a coherent and comparable disclosure and contributes to uncertainty within the financial sector over the impact of environmental risk. This uncertainty justifies an expanded role of international financial regulations in establishing a mandatory and harmonized disclosure standard that can be applied across different domestic jurisdictions.
  • Topic: Environment, International Trade and Finance, Markets
  • Political Geography: United Nations
  • Author: John Whalley, Hejing Chen
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: China, in the next few years, faces the prospect of major regional and bilateral trade negotiations possibly including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and Japan, Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand and separate negotiations with India, Korea and Japan, potentially the United States and even possibly the European Union. A likely key element in such negotiations, and one already raised by the United States in the TPP negotiations, is that of trade arrangements involving state-owned enterprises (SOEs). China is viewed from outside as having a large SOE sector, and large SOEs are viewed as having a protected monopoly position in domestic Chinese markets.
  • Topic: International Trade and Finance, Markets, World Trade Organization
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Europe, India, Asia, Australia, Korea