Friday, March 24, 2017 from 9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. (on the record)
1. Iain Conn, CEO, Centrica
2. Michael Fekl, Secretary of Trade, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, France
3. Marietje Schaake, Member, European Parliament
4. Michael Stumo, CEO, Coalition for a Prosperous America
5. Moderator: Max Hoffman, Deutsche Welle
Does the World Want to Be Connected? Part 1: The Economics
In the wake of the 2008-10 financial crisis, the costs of economic globalization have been a hot-button issue on both sides of the Atlantic. The two most significant political events of 2016, the British vote to leave the European Union and the result of the U.S. presidential election, were preceded by campaigns in which the negative consequences of international economic integration, including through trade agreements, featured heavily. Opposition had been growing in Western Europe to the EU–U.S. Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, contributing to the failure to conclude it during Obama’s term, as well as to the near-rejection of the EU–Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.
This “backlash against globalization” has led many in “developed” countries to question the appropriate degree of international economic integration and the ability of nation states to retain democratic control over economic decision-making processes. But even as wages stagnated in the United States and much of Europe, people throughout the rest of the world benefited enormously, with over a billion lifted out of abject poverty in China, India, Africa, and elsewhere, and hundreds of millions moving into a new global “middle class.” That Chinese President Xi Jinping stressed the importance of the global rules-based trading system in his Davos remarks underscores this new developed/developing divide: those who created the system increasingly doubt it and those who once saw that system as a veiled form of exploitation now wanting to shore it up.
See my other work on trade here