1993 volume 25(2) pages 273 – 291

Cite as:
Grant R, 1993, "Trading blocs or trading blows? The macroeconomic geography of US and Japanese trade policies" Environment and Planning A 25(2) 273 – 291

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Trading blocs or trading blows? The macroeconomic geography of US and Japanese trade policies

R Grant

Received 10 March 1992; in revised form 31 July 1992

Abstract. In this paper, US and Japanese trade policies are examined from an institutional perspective: an approach taken with renewed interest by researchers in political science and economics. An attempt is made, by taking this approach, to bridge international and domestic politics by positioning state institutions at the center of analysis. The institutional framework is situated within a cyclical context of Kondratieff cycles in the global economy. The findings demonstrate that the US and Japanese governments have altered their trade policies according to broader cyclical developments in the global economy. US and Japanese trade policies can be seen as the reverse of each other: the US pursued a policy of liberalization up to the 1970s, whereas Japan entertained protectionism, and recently the two have switched roles.

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