Chapter 16 Keep on trading in the Free World
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This chapter starts by positing that Trump’s victory and the Brexit result are symptoms of how trade policies are taking a central place in political discourses and electoral battles. Looking forward, it focuses on three areas of concern for politicians and policymakers designing and implementing the EU’s common commercial policy. The EU should play a leading role in restoring the credibility of the global trading system and promoting constructive consensus among political circles and the international community at large. The current backlash against free trade, multilateralism and global governance calls for fresh, creative policies. A more inclusive trade agenda is crucial to respond to the legitimate concerns of citizens. This can only be achieved, however, if the policymaking process itself also becomes more inclusive: citizens need to feel confident about the benefits of trade and investment policies and reassured that any negative side effects are properly tackled.

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