Economic Arguments Against Free Trade

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The writer of this paper is against unrestricted international trade. Free trade agreements were originally put into place to help Americans sell their products overseas, but it has only succeeded in hurting both the seller and the buyer. If a clothing company owns a factory, in this country, they must pay their workers a living wage and provide a fair amount of benefits. This company realizes that it cannot compete against companies in other countries that pay their workers less than $1.00 an hour. The company must then make a decision, close the business or move operations to a foreign land. Either way Americans lose. If this same company closes, the American workers will be out of work. If the firm moves operations overseas, Americans will still be out of work. Yes some people will rejoice because they can buy a shirt at Wal-Mart for $10.00, but tell that to the American who no longer has a job and who has trouble buying food to feed his family let alone a new shirt.

Developing countries do not truly benefit from unrestricted trade. Many of these third world countries lack the basic natural resources which would allow them to be competitive in an international market. They must rely heavily on a developed nation because they cannot sell their own goods in the international market. The few countries that have adequate goods for trading face significant competition on the global market front. There are still some governments of foreign countries that will not want to trade with certain countries due to preconceived ideas or feelings of distrust.

A trade only works when both parties can benefit from it. Reliance on foreign suppliers may be considered unacceptable when it comes to industries with a significant role in national security. For example, many governments are determined to ensure the so-called food security of their countries in case food imports are cut off during a war.(Soubbotina, 2007). It has been noted by economists that...
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