Economic nationalism

Document type
Smith Institute
Date of publication
21 November 2007
Social Policy
Social welfare
Material type

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This pamphlet examines economic nationalism as a form of protectionism, looking at the situation in the UK, Europe and the US. The UK has long been a leading advocate of free trade and boasts one of the most open markets in the developed world. British politicians and business leaders have consistently pointed to the benefits of globalisation and argued against economic protectionism. But the free trade view of the world is being challenged by those who call for strict limits to free trade and tighter controls over foreign ownership. This collection of essays opens up the debate about the benefits and costs of more open markets and discusses the winners and losers of globalisation. By way of comment, analysis and case studies, the authors provide an insight into current thinking about world trade and the resurgence of economic nationalism. In particular, the essays explore the impact on the UK of creeping protectionism and develop the argument for a stronger EU commitment to free trade and a more forward-looking and positive approach towards globalisation.