Social Dimensions Of Free Trade Agreements

The main objective of the working arrangements is to improve working conditions in the signatory countries, to cooperate between the signatory states and to monitor the progress of the agreement from a comprehensive framework. Cooperation activities include regulating multinational conglomerates, improving national workplace health and safety practices, implementing capacity of national labour organizations, and raising awareness of workers` rights. Complaint mechanisms and the role of civil society – particularly workers` organisations – are additional dimensions of labour conditionality that must be incorporated into a free trade agreement (ILO, 2015). Lechner, L. (2016). The domestic policy dispute over the organization of unprocessed trade issues in preferential trade agreements. Review of International Political Economy., 23 (5), 840-871. Hiscox, M. J. (2006). Through a glass and dark: attitudes towards international trade and the strange effects of the design of themes. International Organization, 60 (3), 755-780.

Bastiaans, I., Postnikov, E. Social standards in trade agreements and free trade preferences: an empirical survey. Organ Rev Int 15, 793-816 (2020). Scheve, K. F., Slaughter, M. J. (2001). This determines individual business preferences. Journal of International Economics, 54 (2), 267-292. Mansfield, E. D., Mutz, D.C., (2009). Support for free trade: self-interest, sociotropic politics and intergroup fear.

International Organization, 63 (3), 425-457. [1] Ncekara, A. and Ustaolu, M. (2012). The European Union`s multilateralism in landfills, customs unions and free trade agreements: comparative swot analysis of the Turkish and South Korean automotive industries. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 58, 464-473. Since the creation of the WTO on 1 January 1995, free trade agreements have developed as a strategy to promote regional integration and free trade between Member States. Nevertheless, the impact of such agreements is not only on the economy, but also on society. Some of these agreements do not contain labour law clauses and there are almost no provisions to promote social systems. The texts of the commercial contracts are available at:;; International integration promoted by free trade agreements has increasingly become a key area of the economy over the past two decades. Free trade agreements have both social and economic implications, with explicit implications for the level of international trade, economic growth and prosperity, as well as social protection systems related to human and workers` rights.

This blog recounts the results of a recent study that analyses the impact of the integration of labour rules within the framework of the European Union (EU) Free Trade Agreement and the Colombian Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The results highlight the main concerns of the EU and Colombia regarding the implementation of the Chapter on Trade and Sustainable Development (TSD), which was included in the trade agreement, as well as on human and workers` rights.