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Issues in Trade and Protectionism


  • Dean Baker


There is widespread concern that the United States and the rest of the world are descending into a round of protectionism and a trade war reminiscent of what the world experienced in the Great Depression. Such concerns are both overblown and misplaced. In the short term, the main concern in the United States and rest of the world should be to promote an increase in demand through whatever means necessary. For the longer term, there has been an excessive fixation on protection for merchandise trade. Other areas, most notably alternative intellectual property regimes and freer trade in highly paid professional services, offer much larger potential gains than further reductions in barriers to trade in goods.

Suggested Citation

  • Dean Baker, 2009. "Issues in Trade and Protectionism," CEPR Reports and Issue Briefs 2009-45, Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR).
  • Handle: RePEc:epo:papers:2009-45

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Dani Rodrik, 2006. "The social cost of foreign exchange reserves," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(3), pages 253-266.
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    More about this item


    Free Trade; trade; protectionism;

    JEL classification:

    • F - International Economics
    • F1 - International Economics - - Trade
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • O - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth
    • O3 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital

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