In this issue, the Journal of the World Studies presents five selected articles focusing on the dispute settlement mechanism under the global trading system and salient issues relating to trade relations at the regional level. Topics related to the global trading system analysed in this edition, include the dispute between the US and China and the implementation of cross-agreement retaliation. Articles covering the regional level of trade discuss: the cumulative rules of origin for closer economic integration by focusing on the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) single market perspective; the formation of bilateral Free Trade Agreements (FTA) and ASEAN agreements; and also the Indonesian government policy on creative economy in order to cope with the ASEAN Economic Community.
The paper attempts to map out the governance of regional and global value chains of top ten Indonesia’s export commodities in an effort to annotate its upgrading and diversification endeavors. Dominated by natural resources commodities and extractive industries (such as oil and gas, coal, copper and other minerals, palm oil, rubber and other horticulture commodities), export diversification and upgrading have been the concerns of related stakeholders in the industries. Study on how the endeavors are tightly connected to its regional and global value chains governance is in necessity in the face of Indonesia’s continuing trade deficit trend during the last decade. The paper is accordingly an inquiry to propose alternative explanation (and keenly policy notes) that goes beyond recent public debate in Indonesia (and elsewhere) on whether safeguard or protection of such industries and commodities is the accurate policy choice.
The paper endeavors to link developing country’s export-driven industrial clusters to international post-disaster relief program in their efforts to sustain in international trade activities. In line with the context of Aid-for-Trade initiative undertaken by WTO (World Trade Organization) and OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) since WTO’s Hong Kong Ministerial Conference in 2005, it pioneers an effort to attribute locally based and initiated community-based program with the wider context of international development assistance scheme. By offering cases on handicraft, furniture industrial clusters and its tourism-related services in the area affected by Yogyakarta’s 2010 volcanic eruption and 2006 earthquake, the paper seeks to explain how the clusters escape from and sustain themselves in production, distribution, market and business disruptions and eventually develop resilient recovery programs. The paper attempts to map out the clusters’ community development programs in their efforts to recover from the disruptions and at the same time to develop their upgrading capacities to remain competitive in the global value chains of handicraft and furniture industries as well as its tourism-related supporting services.