Countries Don't Trade
Re: Roberts' response, free trade is rarely 'between countries' as such. Yes, the U S Government buys 9mm Beretta pistols from a firm in Italy, but not from Italy as a country. As I see it, free trade consists in letting individual exporters and importers buy from whomever they wish without government intervention of any sort. Mazda, in Japan, has a comparative advantage in building/selling Miatas, while BMW in Germany has a comparative advantage in building/selling Bimmers. And farmers in the U S have a comparative advantage in growing/selling certain agricultural products, while foresters in Canada have a comparative advantage in growing/selling pulpwood. It is the individual producers/exporters and importers that gain from free trade, not the countries per se, And therefore free trade should be encouraged by all.
Posted by Dave Garhoff