Trumponomics: fair and reciprocal trade

Let the local and regional governments decide themselves the rules governing their markets and their external economic relations on a case by case basis. How far free trade and growing global economic integration impacted the lives of common people around the world?

Its impact on local small businesses and job creation is perceived to be very negative. Civil society groups, non-governmental organizations as well as representative bodies of small businesses and informal sector claim significant negative impact of ‘enhanced economic globalization’ on small business enterprises and their job creation potential.

The concept of “Comparative advantage” in a multilateral context is a complex matter for the national governments and their economic systems and institutions to handle.

There are a number of concerns that local businesses have regarding the impact of trade liberalizing policies and the World Trade Organization.

Governments have a responsibility to protect the interests of its citizens.  Ensuring livelihood security by way of protecting local businesses and thereby protecting jobs should be the priority of any nation.

By ignoring sovereignty in the name of economic globalization, nations have hurt themselves and the interest of local businesses in their nations. Ensuring the survival of small traders, micro and small industries that service the needs of a particular neighborhood market is in the interest of all nations, its people, and for peace in every region.

The President of the United States, Mr. Donald Trump, has been in fact reflecting  the views of a  constituency, which is spread out globally and in all nations, who got affected by unregulated globalization , where the State losing its regulative power to protect jobs and local businesses.

Globalization provides an opportunity for brands to travel to other market destinations and represent themselves in the shopping malls for those who can afford to shop in the mega shopping centers. The benefit goes to international retail giants, large MNCs, and global brands.

Concerns articulated by him, ironically, reflect the concern of civil society groups, NGOs as well as small and micro businesses, which need the ‘freedom, opportunity and environment ’ to do business in their neighborhood market rather than the opportunity to sell beyond the borders and globally. They are the vast majority of the enterprise community.  They are the largest employment generators. For many of them reality is that the current economic globalization rules and pattern have failed them. Millions of workers are losing jobs and enterprises have to close their operations.

While addressing 2017 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) CEO Summit on 10 November 2017, he focused on “fair and reciprocal trade”. He said trade “agreements that tie our hands, surrender our sovereignty, and make meaningful enforcement practically impossible” are not acceptable.

Donald Trump makes a lot of sense here. And the time has come to think about reforming the world trade arrangements, rules, frameworks and organizations governing them.

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