For centuries the nations and principalities of the world have engaged in trading schemes to boost exports. Conquest, protection of domestic supply through tariffs and eroding domestic currency are all part of the historic policy harem. The United States has a foreign trade zone program. Who knew? FTZs evoke images of women locked inside a dark sweatshop in a jungle making hoodies for football fans. While these "developing" countries have unambiguously embraced FTZs as an export strategy, Uncle Sam has played the unwilling suitor to the concept, making the FTZ a common law revealed preference while engaged with but not quite married to tariff reduction. This essay will compare the US program to its international counterpart and discuss the social policy implications on the US labor force.
Economic Policy | International Economics | Social Work
Smith, Richard J., "US Foreign Trade Zones as the Secret Lover: Is Uncle Sam Faithful to Tariff Elimination?" (2009). Social Work Faculty Publications. 25.