10/03/2008 19:55

Storia, commercio e conflitti


Lessons from the history of trade and war

Articolo lincato qui sopra. La storia dimostra che nel momento in cui entrano in contatto mercati molto diversi, può scoppiare una guerra. Anche questo sarebbe un libro da leggere.

The standard theory of international trade tells us that while trade may raise incomes generally, it produces both winners and losers. If the losers are sufficiently politically powerful, they may convince governments to impose protection. More importantly, history tells us that this is not just a theoretical curiosum, since this is exactly what happened in late 19th century Europe.

What sorts of challenges might arise to threaten 21st century globalisation? One striking feature of today's international economy is that, as in the 19th century, regions with very different factor endowments are being drawn into closer contact with each other, as what used to be known as the Third World opens up to the rich countries of the North. Will the modern day equivalents of the farmers of 19th century Europe, namely unskilled workers in the OECD, eventually press for and obtain a rolling back of trade liberalisation?