• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Trade Protectionism Is Clogging the World's Economic Arteries

    In its latest joint report with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the World Trade Organization (WTO) issued sharp warnings on global trade restrictions:

    The past seven months have not witnessed any slowdown in the imposition of new trade restrictions. And there is no indication that efforts have been stepped up to remove existing restrictions, particularly those introduced since the start of the global crisis.… The accumulation of trade restrictions is a matter of concern, which is aggravated by the relatively slow pace of rollback of existing measures. This situation is clearly adding to the downside risks to the global economy. Moreover, government support to selected sectors is distorting competition and restricting trade.

    Sadly, various pledges by world leaders not to disrupt global free trade with more barriers have been repeatedly broken since 2008. WTO chief Pascal Lamy sums up the danger of rising protectionism:

    Protectionism is like cholesterol: the slow accumulation of trade restrictive measures since 2008—now covering almost 3 per cent of world merchandise trade, and almost 4 per cent of G20 trade—can lead to the clogging of trade flows.

    The collateral damage of rising trade protectionism can only get costlier over time. Unless the trend is reversed soon, the economic sclerosis we are currently suffering could turn into a full-blown economic health crisis.

    Posted in Economics [slideshow_deploy]

    Comments are closed.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.