Ford Is Right About Trade for Wrong Reasons

The automaker wants the Trans-Pacific Partnership to limit currency manipulation.

Obvious forms of protectionism, such as import quotas and subsidies for exports, were eliminated by the World Trade Organization in the 1990s. No matter, states have many other ways to favor domestic businesses over foreign ones, such as discriminatory environmental and safety regulations, selective enforcement of intellectual property rules, and rigged government-procurement contracts. The WTO was supposed to deal with these questions in its Doha Round, which started at the end of 2001, though little progress has been made. That's why the U.S. and the European Union have been working on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership while the U.S. and a variety of countries such as Australia, Japan and Vietnam have been negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

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