Trade critics often charge that proposed trade agreements like the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) essentially serve the one percent—while harming virtually everyone else. But new trade pacts actually present a significant opportunity to drive more inclusive trade—especially by supporting the revolution in digitally enabled global commerce.
In this policy brief, we explain why it is critical for America to lead in writing modern trade rules that promote the free flow of data and open digital commerce. And we highlight some of the many ways in which the 99 percent—from entrepreneurs and small businesses to consumers and communities—benefit from “democratized” trade in a global digital economy that is both open and fair.
Who Benefits from New Trade Deals?
Over the past three decades, America’s trade agreements have become increasingly complex. While early trade agreements were focused on eliminating high tariffs, modern trade pacts also address non-tariff and “behind the border” barriers, like standards that discriminate against imported products or rules that discourage foreign investment.
To President Obama and supporters of trade promotion authority (TPA) legislation, addressing “21st Century” issues in the TPP and other new trade pacts would enable America to benefit broadly from expanding trade with a growing global economy.