Забытые достоинства свободной торговли.

ЛОНДОН – Как недавно заявил президент Франции Николя Саркози, «эпоха свободной конкуренции закончилась.» Возможно, это так – но следует ли нам радоваться тому, что он прав? Если свободная конкуренция себя и в самом деле исчерпала, что может заменить её в качестве основы открытого, всемирного общества?  

Сейчас более чем когда-либо стоит вспомнить о том, что последний крупный финансовый крах не только привёл к проведению Нового курса в Соединённых Штатах, но и поверг мир в новый век обскурантизма, с его экономическим национализмом и империализмом. Свободная торговля далека от совершенства, однако альтернативы ещё хуже. Протекционизм вреден для благосостояния наций, демократии и мира.

Несмотря на это, существует реальная угроза всплеска новой волны протекционизма. Барак Обама, играя на подъёме протекционистских чувств среди американцев, во время своей кампании пригрозил полностью переписать Североамериканское соглашение о свободной торговле в одностороннем порядке. Июльский раунд торговых переговоров Всемирной торговой организации в Дохе закончился провалом, частично благодаря тому, что США отказались сокращать субсидии в сельскохозяйственный сектор.

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