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International Political Economics Essay

1937 words - 8 pages

Election year is always a difficult time for those who expect politicians and pundits to remain rational. The political maneuvering started a while ago and clean energy became another point of contention between various political factions. “ONE YEAR AGO TODAY, THE SOLAR MANUFACTURER SOLYNDRA FILED FOR BANKRUPTCY AFTER RECEIVING A $527 MILLION LOAN GUARANTEE. THE BANKRUPTCY SET OFF A POLITICAL FIRESTORM IN CONGRESS, AND EVENTUALLY WORKED ITS WAY INTO THE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN. TODAY, THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IS USING SOLYNDRA AS A KEY TOOL IN ITS CAMPAIGN AGAINST OBAMA — SMEARING THE ENTIRE CLEAN ENERGY INDUSTRY IN THE PROCESS.” (Lacey, 2012) Campaigns of this magnitude have a significant impact ...view middle of the document...

THE U.S. MEASURES SUPPORTING WIND, SOLAR AND HYDROELECTRIC ENERGY PROGRAMS IN SEVERAL U.S. STATES, INCLUDING MASSACHUSETTS, OHIO AND NEW JERSEY, PRESENT A BARRIER TO CHINESE EXPORTS, THE MINISTRY SAID IN A STATEMENT ON ITS WEBSITE. (Martina, 2012).
On the other hand, “WESTERN SOLAR COMPANIES HAVE BEEN AT ODDS WITH THEIR CHINESE COUNTERPARTS FOR YEARS, ALLEGING THEY RECEIVE LAVISH CREDIT LINES TO OFFER MODULES AT CHEAPER PRICES. THE UNITED STATES IN MAY IMPOSED DUTIES OF ABOUT 31 PERCENT ON SOLAR PANEL IMPORTS FROM CHINA. (Martina, 2012). Far from this being strictly a U.S. issues, “CHINESE SOLAR COMPANIES WARNED OF A TRADE WAR LAST MONTH AFTER EUROPEAN FIRMS LED BY GERMANY'S SOLARWORLD ASKED THE EUROPEAN UNION TO INVESTIGATE COMPLAINTS THAT CHINESE RIVALS HAD BEEN SELLING THEIR PRODUCTS BELOW MARKET VALUE IN EUROPE.“(Martina, 2012).
In current, difficult economic times, various governments are trying to protect their national interest by engaging in trade protectionism. “AS THE GLOBAL ECONOMY CONTINUES TO FACE TOUGH TIMES, GOVERNMENTS ARE INCREASINGLY PLAYING POLITICS WITH TRADE AND GIVING IN TO PROTECTIONISM. […], CHINA'S TOP PROMOTER OF FOREIGN TRADE, WAN JIFEI, SAID RISING PROTECTIONISM WAS HAVING A NEGATIVE IMPACT. (Plummer, 2012). While some might find those laughable coming from China, their sentiments, and underlying issues are real. “THE REPUBLICANS' MITT ROMNEY HAS PLEDGED TO DECLARE CHINA A "CURRENCY MANIPULATOR" moreover China is “FACING SEVERAL CASES AT THE WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION (WTO), INCLUDING ONE BROUGHT JOINTLY BY THE US, THE EU AND JAPAN OVER ITS RESTRICTIONS ON RARE EARTH EXPORTS. “(Plummer, 2012). Not to be outdone: EU, Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay), and even India are engaged to some degree in trade protectionism and organizing into trade blocks or bilateral trade agreements. Unfortunately, protectionism is generally an emotionally and politically driven concept that is not based on generally accepted economic principles. “THERE IS STRONG CONSENSUS AMONG ECONOMISTS THAT PROTECTIONISM IS GENERALLY BA FOR WELFARE. […]” Through various economic efforts in combatting the counter-cycling protectionism “ECONOMICS HAVE HELPED REDUCE THE CYCLICALITY OF PROTECTIONISM, […] PERHAPS THEY SHOULD [also] FOCUS ON SIMPLY REDUCING PROTECTIONISM.” (Rose, 2012, p. 11)
Human rights is another issue plaguing China. Multiple non-governmental organizations and oppositions groups resolved to creating websites dedicated to exposing Chinese violations and abuses. Sites like www.chinahumanrights.org, tend to be very professional and document humanitarian problems that Chinese citizens has to contend with. The Human Rights Watch in their latest report, describes China as: “AN AUTHORITARIAN ONE-PARTY STATE THAT IMPOSES SHARP CURBS ON FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION, ASSOCIATION, AND RELIGION; OPENLY REJECTS JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE AND PRESS FREEDOM; AND ARBITRARILY RESTRICTS AND SUPPRESSES HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDERS AND ORGANIZATIONS,...

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