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Imf and World Bank Challenge Nation State

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To what extent do organizations like the IMF, WTO, and World Bank challenge the nation state’s ability to shape domestic economic and social policy?

The World Trade Organization welcomed with open arms Russia in 2012. This would open up trade possibilities for many countries in Asia, Europe and even the US. Some US companies, like Caterpillar, are already exporting a substantial amount to Russia. However, many in Congress do not want to grant Russia permanent normal trade status because of the way Russia has handled many political situations. As Andrew Kramer brought out in his NY Times article, “Congress has balked at the Obama administration’s request to grant Russia permanent normal trade relation status”. This could lead to retaliation by Russia against US companies by applying higher tariffs on their imported goods. According to Mr. Kramer’s article, the US company Caterpillar has sold 2 billion dollars worth of equipment to Russia in the last 5 years. However, President Obama’s administration, as well as his predecessors, has pushed to open up more trade with Russia. The WTO requires that all member nations have applied the same trade rules. Therefore, since the US is the largest financial contributor to the WTO, it would seem to be expected that it would play by the rules. So the WTO certainly has an effect on how the US constructs it trade policy with Russia. The pressure from inside the country, especially from those who think that Congress’ inaction could cost US companies a lot in tariffs, will be to allow Russia the same trade status as other WTO member countries. There is also the concern that other manufacturers in Europe and Asia will be able to offer better prices to Russian buyers without paying the same large tariffs as American companies. Because once Russia joins the WTO, all the other countries can use the WTO to make sure that Russia sticks...

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