The point is that the benefits of economic integration over time far outweigh the costs. Singapore might be headed for minus 5 percent growth this year due to the very high share of exports (of trade services among other things) in its national accounts. But, like the rest of Asia, it has enjoyed double-digit year-on-year export growth for much of the last decade. Whose future is more bankable in a recession? Economies with a high trade-to-GDP ratio or isolated, ‘basket-case’ economies (like North Korea or Laos or Moldova)?
Peter Gallagher is student of piano and photography. He was formerly a senior trade official of the Australian government. For some years after leaving government, he consulted to international organizations, governments and business groups on trade and public policy.
He teaches graduate classes at the University of Adelaide on trade research methods and the role of firms in trade and growth and tweets trade (and other) stuff from @pwgallagher