Mark Thomas - New Mayor for Auckland

Trade In the Age of Trump

The World Bank has been challenged to reexamine the evidence on the benefits of trade. So said Anabel Gonzalez, Senior Director of the World Bank Group Global Practice on Trade and Competitiveness Unit, and a former Trade Minister in Costa Rico, in an address in Singapore recently.


She made a robust defence of the benefits of global trade eg. Poverty in Vietnam was 64% poverty in 1993, it 3% today – aided by 150% increas in trade.

But she also acknowledged that Trump in the US and, to a lesser extent, Brexit, had forced the WTO to re-examine its approach.

She outlined four opportunities to address the Trump and others concerns:

1. Reinvigorate trade cooperations that can work eg. China’s Belt and Road iniative.

2. Bringing new developing countries further into work trade.

3. Strengthen the focus on more inclusive trade benefits

4. Improve competitiveness.

Her full speech is here.

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