Russia has raised tariffs on used cars. China has tightened import standards on food, banning Irish pork, among other things. India has banned Chinese toys. Argentina has tightened licensing requirements on auto parts, textiles and leather goods. And a dozen countries, from the United States to Australia, are subsidizing embattled automakers or car dealers.Read the article 'Trade barriers rise as the recession's grip tightens' in the IHT.
The most vivid example of that policy is the "Buy America" provision in the stimulus package, intended to ensure that only American manufacturers benefited from public-spending projects. The Obama administration persuaded Congress to water it down, and Mr. Obama has taken up Mr. Bush's warnings about the dangers of protectionism.
But pressures are building on other fronts. Last week, the (US) energy secretary, Steven Chu, said he favored tariffs on Chinese goods if China did not sign on to mandatory reductions in greenhouse gas emissions — underscoring how the "green economy" could be the next trade battleground.
Monday, March 23, 2009
Protectionism is increasing - not surprised, are we?