Trade Update – "Buy American" clause removed

It looks like a global trade war had been averted for the time being. President Obama announced last night he would remove the “Buy American” clause from the stimulus package. A sigh of relief was breathed by all who enjoy affordable goods and true economic recovery.

From the UK Times:

Last night Mr Obama gave a strong signal that he would remove the most provocative passages from the Bill.

“I agree that we can’t send a protectionist message,” he said in an interview with Fox TV. “I want to see what kind of language we can work on this issue. I think it would be a mistake, though, at a time when worldwide trade is declining, for us to start sending a message that somehow we’re just looking after ourselves and not concerned with world trade.”

Mr Brown does not want to join criticism of President Obama’s stimulus proposals, which he sees as vindicating his own, but the Prime Minister remains strongly anti-protectionist, resisting calls yesterday for more safeguards for British workers.

Trade unions demanded a tightening of the law on the use of foreign workers as hundreds again walked out at the Lindsey oil refinery in protest at the hiring of Italian and Portuguese workers, and energy workers around the country followed suit.

Reason has their take on outcome here. The Libertarian opinion on the whole matter is decidedly pessimistic.

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