GWU Webinar on Protectionism in International Procurement

The George Washington University presented a webinar on September 7 on “New Protectionism in International Public Procurement.” The discussion included unilateral procurement actions by the United States and the European Union (EU). For the US, the focus was on the Biden administration’s “Buy American” actions, in particular the President’s ‘Buy American’ order and the broad domestic preference in the Investment and Infrastructure Jobs Act.

Two measures adopted by the EU in 2022 garnered particular attention. One is the EU’s implementation of an International Procurement Instrument (IPI) at the end of August. The IPI authorizes the EU to exclude or penalize suppliers from countries that refuse to open or remove obstacles to European participation in their procurement. The second measure, a Foreign Subsidies Regulation, seeks to remedy the effect of foreign subsidies that distort EU procurement. It has yet to be formally adopted.

Jean Heilman Grier

September 7, 2022

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Update (Sept. 15, 2022): added blog post on EU Agreement on Foreign Subsidies Regulation.

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    Book: The International Procurement System Government procurement required 40 years and substantial efforts to become part of the international trade regime, even though it comprises a significant part of the global economy. The international system requires governments to balance protectionist forces favoring local suppliers against the pressures of liberalization, which expand procurement markets and lower prices.