Parag Khanna for Politico: Trade grows – without the U.S.
In the latest piece from Parag Khanna for Politico, he points to the growing volume of inter-regional trade between many parts of the world, especially Europe and Asia. Indeed, Euro-Asian trade is now greater than trans-Atlantic trade. This data underscores his claim in Connectography that “connectivity across Eurasia now competes with culture across the Atlantic.”
The coming weeks will witness Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) countries gather in Chile for a “TPP minus one” (meaning without the U.S.) trade summit, renewed efforts towards an Asia-centric Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), and China’s convening of a major “One Belt, One Road” summit with dozens of countries committing resources to new cross-border infrastructure projects.
President Donald Trump promises huge wins for the United States in the global trade arena, claiming he will use America’s market size and buying power to write better deals. It’s a worldview that assumes America’s economic might gives it almost unlimited leverage – and that the rest of the world will need to play ball if it wants access to American customers and finance.
That may once have been true. But a closer look at just how global trade has been re-aligning suggests that it’s likely to keep growing with or without us – and increasingly, it’s without us. Globalisation is alive and well, regardless of whether the trade routes run through the US. And if an “America First” White House does start to retrench and retreat, there’s a good chance the biggest loser will be America itself…
More about Parag Khanna
Parag Khanna is a leading global strategist, world traveler, and best-selling author. He is a Senior Research Fellow in the Centre on Asia and Globalisation at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. He is also the Managing Partner of Hybrid Reality, a boutique geostrategic advisory firm, and Co-Founder & CEO of Factotum, a leading content branding agency.