Free trade has become less free in recent years, leading to “slowbalization,” according to Simon Evenett, the Professor of International Trade and Economic Development at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland. Prof. Evenett will speak at the 2023 Camden Conference, Global Trade and Politics: Managing Turbulence, February 17-19 at the Camden Opera House.
Prof. Evenett told the German Engineering Federation, VDMA, in June of 2022 that tariff barriers, subsidized foreign competition and government export promotion measures are impeding the growth of trade worldwide. Evenett said government protectionism, the Covid-19 pandemic, restrictive migration flows and U.S.–China antagonism have all hampered global economic recovery, “and there is no relief in sight.”
Prof. Evenett, founder of the Global Trade Alert, an independent service that monitors trade policy, told the Geneva Trade Platform that an “onslaught of new or poorly designed regulation” has left the private sector guessing what form implementation will take. He says the cost of this “policy uncertainty” is especially high in the area of data flows. “Without legal cross-border data flows,” he noted, “organizing international trade goes back to phones and fax machines.”
Prof. Evenett will join a roster of distinguished experts for the 36th annual Camden Conference, moderated by David Brancaccio, the host and senior editor of American Public Media’s Marketplace Morning Report. The Conference will focus on the future of global commerce and ways in which commerce, global politics and national security could be successfully managed for both competition and cooperation.
Simon Evenett has been a World Bank official, a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Trade and Investment, and has published numerous books and articles. He obtained his B.A in Economics from the University of Cambridge, and his Ph.D. in Economics from Yale University
The Camden Conference is a nonprofit, non-partisan, volunteer-driven citizens’ forum with the mission of fostering informed discourse on world issues. Year-round public engagement through community events and student education programs culminates in an annual February weekend conference presented live on the stage of the Camden Opera House and livestreamed to venues in Maine and households around the world. For more information, please visit www.camdenconference.org.