Volume 8 – 2018 (0006)

Jogos com fronteiras: o regresso do proteccionismo e do mercantilismo

José Pedro Teixeira Fernandes 1

1 ISCET – High Institute of Business and Tourism Sciences, Porto, Portugal

To cite this text:

Fernandes, J. P. T. (2018), Jogos com fronteiras: o regresso do proteccionismo e do mercantilismo, Percursos & Ideias, Vol. 8, pp. 55-62.

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The paper reviews the main arguments that favor free trade and the opposition it – protectionism and mercantilism. In the current globalized world, buying or selling products in different parts of the world is part of the habits of companies and also of the consumers. But this kind of world is a political choice, not an economic inevitability, and created many discontents. The liberal conceptions underlying globalization have underestimated the negative effects on certain population groups and economic sectors. Further, the US and the European Union saw themselves as winners of globalization. They underestimated China and its (neo)mercantilist approach that benefited from the opening of markets by the WTO. Thus, an atmosphere of skepticism and opposition to the virtues of international free trade emerged in the USA and the European Union. Protectionism and (neo) mercantilism may not be mere past conceptions that have had a conjunctural revivalism in recent years. Probably, they are trends that will mark the 21st century international economy and politics.


Globalization, WTO, Free trade, Protectionism, Mercantilism.


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