Deglobalisation and Protectionism

Uri Dadush

Trade in goods has slowed markedly since the global financial crisis (GFC), but there is 
no deglobalisation: most countries have seen increased international integration across 
nearly all goods, services and factor markets. China has become more self-reliant and 
is a notable exception in goods trade. Despite some dramatic instances, protectionism 
has largely been kept at bay and trade in goods remains quite free, perhaps freer 
than it was before the GFC. The proliferation and deepening of free trade agreements 
have contributed to this outcome. There has been deglobalisation of capital markets, 
but not because of protectionism. Despite efforts to erect barriers in some sensitive 
sectors, technology flows quite freely across borders because of the internet. However, 
trade policy uncertainty increased after the election of President Trump, a trend that 
persists under President Biden, and the biggest challenge is to avoid backsliding. There 
are many missed opportunities in the globalisation of services and of capital flows – 
especially those to developing countries. Increased migration remains potentially the 
largest source of gain from globalisation, but it is also the most fraught politically.

Πηγή: Bruegel

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