Trading Relations

  • Peter Curwen
Part of the Macmillan Texts in Economics book series (TE)


Government policies in all the OECD countries have been moving in a market-oriented direction in recent years. There is, however, one rather notable exception to this general trend, namely international trade. The trade regimes of most OECD countries are currently less liberal than they were 15 years ago. In a survey carried out by the Harvard Business Review, some 11700 managers in 25 countries proved themselves generally to be as two-faced about free trade as politicians (cause and effect?). 83 per cent of British managers, for example, supported the idea of free trade along with minimal protection for domestic firms — but 80 per cent went on to support the idea that governments should actively assist domestic firms in international markets (see The Economist, 11 May 1991, p. 96). South Koreans, however, were all in favour of protection whereas the Japanese claimed to be much more in favour of free trade then managers in the USA and the EU!


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© Peter Curwen 1997

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  • Peter Curwen

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