Commentary Type

The Future of the Multilateral Trading System

Prepared remarks delivered at American University, Washington, DC



Multilateralism In a Time of Increasing Fragmentation: A strong case can be made for increased international cooperation in the face of urgent common challenges—the need to deal with climate change, future pandemics, accelerating technological change and in many parts of the world, food insecurity. At the same time, forces causing division have been growing due to geopolitical and economic rivalry, the expanded use of national security and economic security measures, subsidies, industrial policies, the felt need for greater supply chain resilience and carbon reduction through trade measures. Countries are seeking solutions that are unilateral, or in small groups with those with allied interests. What does the future hold for global, that is multilateral, economic cooperation?

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