Only Trade Can Rescue World Economy: Brown

'A banking crisis has become a trade crisis,' writes British PM
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted May 28, 2009 8:35 AM CDT
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown speaks during an Iraq investment reception with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, not seen, at 10 Downing Street in central London, Thursday, April 30, 2009.    (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis, Pool)
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(Newser) – The banking crisis has stabilized, according to Gordon Brown, but a new calamity has replaced it: "a trade crisis" that is killing jobs in industrialized nations and exacerbating poverty in developing ones. Globalization has compounded the downturn, but it can also accelerate the pickup, the British PM writes in a Wall Street Journal op-ed. "There can be no recovery in the global economy without a revival of world trade," he contends.

The WTO forecasts that global trade will fall by 9% this year, and exporting nations like Germany and Japan have been hammered. But, just as trade drove postwar recovery in those countries, a revival of world trade—helped by global stimulus, an end to protectionist tariffs, and a successful conclusion to the Doha talks—can put the system back on track. In the face of a trade crisis, writes Brown, "we must show once again our determination to fight back."