The Influence of Ideas on Trade Policy in the Community
The previous chapter reviewed various interests and pressures affecting trade policy in the Community. On the one hand, there are a number of private, bureaucratic and political interests which tend in the direction of interventionist economic policies and protection. On the other hand, protection and subsidisation are often discouraged by fears of retaliation by other countries, considered to be damaging economically, politically or both. Largely missing from this discussion has been the influence of ideas. Governments come into power with more or less agreed policy aims. As a government's term of office progresses, however, ministers are forced to react to events and pressures and as the time for the next election comes inexorably closer, the main concern of governments will be to maintain sufficient support to secure re-election. In any case, ministers and officials find it necessary to justify or explain the policies recommended or implemented in terms of considerations of the public or national good and of the means necessary to achieve the desired ends. Other explanations in terms of desirable ends and necessary means have been suggested by academics and other commentators.
KeywordsCurrent Account Comparative Advantage Trade Policy Current Account Deficit Protestant Work Ethic
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