monopoly or cartel profits created by mercantilist restrictions on trade. This made it less worthwhile to seek, and to enforce, mercantilist restrictions. Greater monarchical power and uncertain property rights in France and Spain, by contrast, were accompanied by slower growth and even stagnation during this period. And the various cabotage laws can be understood as an efficient tool to police the trading cartels. By this view, the establishment of the WTO will have a liberalizing effect if it succeeds in raising the costs or reducing the benefits of those seeking mercantilist profits through trade restrictions.