The complexities of international trade

TED@UPS asks: What if protectionism replaced shared production?

In countries around the world, some politicians have argued that international trade has been unfair to their economies. They propose limiting imports to protect local industries. But as Augie Picado points out, in a global economy that is so interconnected, this protectionist approach doesn’t really work.

The web of production is so intertwined, it would almost be impossible to dismantle it.

Augie is a supply chain expert from the U.S. who currently lives and works in Mexico. Through his work, he has become highly familiar with the complexities of cross-border trade.

In his TED@UPS talk, Augie explains how most of the job losses in the manufacturing industry haven’t been due to trade, but to automation. Trying to stop imports or impose border taxes won’t bring these jobs back. It will only drive the prices of goods up.

Through several examples, Augie shows how the shared production process—with companies around the world focusing on the part of the production process they can do most efficiently—is the best way to create the goods we need at affordable prices.

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