A free and fair global trading system can result in economic win-wins. Open borders allow companies to grow in foreign markets and, simultaneously, ensure that businesses remain competitive at home. That’s why U.S. policy makers have traditionally urged developing countries to reduce tariff and nontariff barriers, often arousing their ire. Few could dispute that logic when, from 1980 to 2000, the world’s biggest economy grew just as rapidly as did all other nations on average.
However, the skeptics about free trade have been gaining influence over the past decade.