A Trade War On the World’s Poorest
US President Donald Trump’s steel tariffs have brought the prospect of a trade war closer to reality. The European Union warns that it has “a whole arsenal at our disposal with which to respond,” while China threatens “a justified and necessary response.”
Economists, politicians, and public figures have all raised concerns about the threat of tit-for-tat trade barriers. But it is difficult to overstate the potential damage. New obstacles to free trade not only take us in the wrong direction; they also undermine the best opportunity to transform the lives of billions of the world’s poorest people and realize benefits worth trillions of dollars every year.