Global Exchange: Free Trade and Protectionism

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Global Exchange: Free Trade and Protectionism (34:00)
Item# 34992

Did protectionist tariffs initiate the Great Depression? Will free trade across international borders benefit all countries involved, or create winners and losers? Is there any middle ground in the globalization debate? This program surveys the history and politics of cross-border trade, identifying ways that nations have tried to strengthen, reduce, or prevent it. Outlining the concept known as pattern of trade, the video examines cases for and against free trade while studying comparative advantage, wage inequality, economies of scale, and the infant industry argument. The evolution of international trade policy is also examined, featuring prominent examples of pro- and anti-protectionist measures: the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act, GATT, NAFTA, the emergence of the World Trade Organization, and more. The success of East Asian economies following World War II highlights the principle of export-oriented industrialization. A Films for the Humanities & Sciences Production. (33 minutes)

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Segments in this Video - (5)

1. Trade Patterns (04:34)
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Multinational trade agreements and technological advancements have created a boom in international trade over the past 35 years. Half of world trade flows between developed countries, one-third flows between developed and developing countries, and about 1

2. Arguments for Free Trade (07:31)

The concepts of comparative advantage and economies of scale underlie the belief that specialization in trade is beneficial. The theory of comparative advantage only works when countries have different resource endowments; economies of scale and product d

3. Arguments Against Free Trade (08:17)

Rich and poor countries alike have found reasons for imposing trade barriers to protect their interests. The two major arguments against free trade are income distribution and increased unemployment.

4. Evolution of International Trade Policy (05:21)

Attitudes toward free trade have fluctuated over the past 100 years; the world economy collapsed at the outbreak of World War I and did not fully recover until after World War II. The success of east Asian economies based on export-oriented industrializat

5. Evolution of International Trade Policy: Free Trade (04:33)

The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) established rules by which countries negotiate lower tariffs on goods; GATT became the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1995. In 1993 labor unions strongly opposed the North American Free Trade Agreement

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