Free Trade Agreements as Bri's Stepping-Stone to Multilateralism: Is the Sino-Swiss FTA the Gold Standard?
Casas i Klett T and Serrano Oswald OR (2018) Free Trade Agreements as BRI's Stepping-Stone to Multilateralism: Is the Sino-Swiss FTA the Gold Standard? In: W. Zhang et al. (eds.), China’s Belt and Road Initiative, Palgrave Studies of Internationalization in Emerging Markets, https://doi.org/10.1007/
20 Pages Posted: 23 Feb 2021
Date Written: June 1, 2018
Part II begins with a case study from Switzerland by Tomas Casas i Klett (China Competence Center, FIM-HSG University of St. Gallen, Switzerland) and Omar Serrano Oswald (University of Geneva, Switzerland) that shows how FTAs are used by the BRI as stepping-stones for multilateralism. They propose that China’s FTAs are part of a long- term multilateral approach with the potential to be included in the insti- tutional infrastructure of the BRI. By developing a BRI Initiatives Dynamic Evaluation Framework, they emphasize that initiatives under BRI will be subject to decision and evaluation mechanisms that tran- scend China proper. This means that rather than being static, FTAs are dynamic. The key element in this iteration is the FTA upgrade, which includes trade impact analyses, business agent surveys, utilization rates, and signaling effects. The Sino–Swiss FTA is evaluated as part of this long-term strategy of upgrading bilateral relationships into a comprehensive system that relies on institutional outsourcing of the upward kind from nations with deep institutional building experience.
Keywords: China, Belt and Road Initiative, Sino-Swiss FTA
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