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Martin Wolf "The Embattled Future of Global Trade Policy"

Due to the failure of multilateral agreements, global trade policy has shifted to a system of plurilateral trade agreements restricted to only a limited subgroup of partners. The most significant of these agreements led by America are the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). According to Martin Wolf, these plurilateral trade agreements are efforts to shape the rules of international commerce; however, the negotiations depend largely on whether the administration receives trade promotion authority from Congress. Martin Wolf states that plurilateral agreements are the best way to liberalize global trade and will bring significant gains, given the failures of multilateral agreements in the past. However, Martin Wolf also cites numerous concerns with these plurilateral arrangements. Due to limited political capital, the focus of these arrangements risks diversion of effort from the World Trade Organization (WTO). Martin Wolf states that benefits of the TTP and the TTIP will most likely be positive, but they also have a high risk of impacting the cause of global trade liberalization.