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A Political Economy Perspective of UK Trade Policy

There is heated debate about the links between trade, development and poverty reduction. There are several accounts of how developed country trade policies affect poverty in developing countries, but it is also useful to examine the case of how trade policies in developed countries such as in the UK affect poverty in developing countries and what type of actors affect such trade policies.

This project produced a report documenting the evolution of UK (and where relevant EU) trade policy and discussing the views and roles of various interest groups. Trade policy does not evolve in a vacuum and it is therefore useful to survey the perceptions of UK trade policy by different actors such as NGOs, business, unions and researchers. Lobby groups range from sugar-producer groups to trade justice campaigns, unions and business lobbies.

Key questions include: How do these groups perceive the UK’s trade policy and its link with development? What arguments have they put forward and how have they affected its formulation? And, how might they affect trade policy in the future?


Massimiliano Cali