International Labor Standards and International Trade

Author/Editor:

Stephen S. Golub

Publication Date:

April 1, 1997

Electronic Access:

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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF.The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate

Summary:

This paper reviews controversies regarding linkage of international trade and labor standards. Pressures for international harmonization of labor standards arise in the context of increased trade between countries with large disparities in wages, and also reflect the history of labor standards. A critical distinction is made between standards related to fundamental human rights and those related to employment conditions. The main conclusion is that trade sanctions to enforce labor standards should not be an option, but that international agreements on core labor standards, with voluntary compliance, may, apart from being worthwhile on ethical grounds, defuse calls for protection.

Series:

Working Paper No. 97/37

Subject:

English

Publication Date:

April 1, 1997

ISBN/ISSN:

9781451845532/1018-5941

Stock No:

WPIEA0371997

Format:

Paper

Pages:

37

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