China's BIT Progress and Implications for China-Canada FTA Talks

CIGI Policy Brief No. 104

April 27, 2017

Rising protectionism since Brexit in the United Kingdom and the election of Donald Trump in the United States poses challenges to the global economy. How China, the second-largest economy, responds to these threats will not only affect the direction of the global economy, but also its own interests. The progress of the China-US bilateral investment treaty (BIT) talks shows that China is embracing a next-generation BIT. Complicated domestic politics have influenced the last stage of the China-US BIT talks. While top leadership in China must intervene to break the stalemate, the US business community has pressed hard on the US government on a variety of issues. China’s acceptance of the next-generation BIT with unilateral liberalization is promising for the forthcoming China-Canada free trade agreement talks. It could be much easier for the two sides to reach agreement on investment and service trade. The talks offer China and Canada a special opportunity to stabilize the regional and world trade order currently challenged by rising protectionism.

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