The contemporary world becomes increasingly globalized, where the trend of globalization is not only implemented in the fields of human movements, international transportation, instant communication via the Internet and exchanges of information. More importantly, when people refer the term of globalization, the very first impression will be placed on the dramatically increased scales and scope of economic co-operations covering a various number of products between nations. (Mauro, Dees, and McKibbin, 2008) Globalization provides more business opportunities and hence increased profits generated in return. In order to pursue the maximized benefits from the economic integrations across the world, multinationals and smaller-scale corporations are actively participating in the trade without physical and unphysical barriers. This is referred as the central concept of the term of free trade. (Hutchens, 2009)
Claimed initiating since the 1500s century across countries including the Great Britain, Egypt, Greece, Rome and China, free trade is believed taking place in the history of human development for centuries. (Shaikh, 2007) Scholars supporting the idea of free trade commend for its contributions in promoting and improving the regional and international peace, since wars and conflicts pursuing national benefits and disputing resources have been commonly believed as the primary reasons preventing harmonious communications and diplomacies between nations. (LeClair, Mark, 1997) After the World Wars, countries seeking immediate economic progresses highly recommended the development of an open market among economic entities. This encouraged the creation of a number of different international institutions and organizations behaving as the global regulators and supporters to promote and developed an environment allowing non-tax and non-barrier trade, where businesses, individual labour forces and financial capitals are enabled to enter markets and obtain market information at the wider global scale. (Yoffie, 1993)
In the modern world, where the actively developing trend of globalization has been recognized and accepted, a fierce debate between proponents and opponents of globalized free trade has been taking place in both the economic and political fields. Arguments are primarily focused on the economic, moral and social-political aspects among different groups including labors, environmentalists and pensioners, where sovereign governments have been left in the middle position. (Held & McGrew, 2000) Proponents suggest for cheaper costs of resources where individual participations, despite developed or developing nations, would equally benefit from the harmoniously developed international free trade. In contrary, opponents of global trade without political and economic barriers claim for decreased profits and damaged environmental conditions due to the depredations by economically stronger nations and corporations across the globe. (Dunkley, 2000) In order to explore detailed debates between groups of arguments either supporting or against the promotion and development of a globalized free trade, this conducted paper will focus on theoretical opinions and reasons behind such expressions raised as the consequence. Discussions will be structured following arguments in the field of economy, morals and social-politics to provide a clear debate between two groups.
Critical Analysis of Arguments Supporting Global Free Trade
The term of free trade is also characterized with laissez-fair economic policies that enable free movement of not only produced goods and services and financial capitals, but also skills, intelligence and knowledge as well as the carriers of them, which are defined as labour forces. Scholars claim for direct and indirect impacts to the moral and social-political stabilities across the world due to the free economic activities and integrations. (Moore, 2003)Among proponents of a globalized free trade, considerable benefits would be shared among different nations as the consequence. Detailed demonstration of such supporting theories and ideas will be provided in the following paragraphs.
Economics recommend that reduced barriers of trade and divided investment enable specialization among countries. Humans have conducting economic development for centuries, where the scarce resources available for implementations to complete production of different goods and services in accordance to various demands among consumers. (Shaikh, 2007) In addition to the advantages offered by the economies of scale, countries have been required to fully apply their obtained competitive advantages to gain the leading position in the particular fields. This encourages countries to pursue and achieve the highest levels of quantity and quality of goods and services produced, where other countries would hardly to be able to compete with. Examples could be drawn from the current division of duties and roles played by different nations across the world by offering different forms of resources, products and capitals, which contribute equally to the economic development of the entire globe. The developed nations including United States, the leading economic players from the European continent, and Japan, have been recommended as the main sources of foreign investment towards the economically less developed nations. (Unger, 2007) The developed countries experienced longer term of economic integration and development, where capabilities in providing modern management and production techniques are stronger. Moreover, the invested financial capitals provide increased employment opportunities and opportunities to boost GDP levels among developing countries. (Irwin, 2002) Consequently, the developed nations become the capitals of intelligence and destination of consumption, where the developing nations apply their competitive advantages in lower labour costs and resource costs to dominate the position as the global manufactures to meet demands among consumers all over the world. (Coyle, 2000)
Moreover, individuals with different levels of education and intelligence will be offered with greater opportunities to apply their skills and knowledge in the most suitable field. Well educated individuals including professionals and skilled labours are enabled to move freely between borders with obtained resources to contribute to the human development across the entire globe. (Drabek, 2001) In practice, the United States is recommended as the centre of advanced techniques based on its strong capabilities in research infrastructures and financial supports, where intelligent individuals have been gathered together to explore and develop high techniques that all humans would benefit from eventually. Developing countries could consume the benefits of these technical harvests by either paying property fees or conduct further development based on this intelligence. (Das, 2004) In comparison, unskilled and less educated labours would be allocated to the manufacturing centres to implement their knowledge and skills in production to offer different types of goods and services in favor of the consumption across the globe. Consequently, a better sustainable and appropriate employment relationship will be formed at the international scale. (Held & McGrew, 2000)
According to the political ideologies among libertarians, individuals should be provided with free right of decision-making in consumption to ensure practical implementations of legitimacy of the central government. Cosmopolitanisms believe individuals should be treated equally with a sound and justifiable standards covering all forms of morals and human rights. (Yoffie, 1993) This could be similarly applied to countries implementing protectionism due to the spirit and policies in patriotism. Liberalisms believe wars and conflicts form economic dependence and directly decrease the potential mutual benefits that countries would take. Hence, any form of obstacles preventing such fair development of capital and industry should be restricted and eliminated. As proved by the dramatic development in economic integrations during the past decades after the World Wars, wars and conflicts have been approved as the primary obstacles of economic integration leading to a holistic development of all nations. (Unger, 2007) Take the example of one of the highly recommended multinational, Starbucks, obtains leading position in the beverage industry focusing in producing coffees at the international scale would lose its vast market shares across the globe and profits generated not only by the company but also individual nations participating in the franchise and employees working for the corporation as well as customers favouring coffee. (Shaikh, 2007)
Moreover, published papers and figures demonstrate dramatic development of the overall living standard among different countries and hence poverty has been decreased. (Held & McGrew, 2000) India and China, two developing countries with the largest portion of global population, employed economic integration during the past few decades and at the same time has been recommended for their contributions in decreasing the number of individuals struggling in poverty by the World Bank. (Held & McGrew, 2000)