Time big business lives up to 'doing well by doing good' pledges

With protectionism and nativism rising and a leadership vacuum at the international level, private-sector actors should step up, if only in defence of their own interests

In 2018, trade, more than any other policy area, was "disrupted". What used to be an archaic, technical and - let's face it - boring array of issues now dominates front-page headlines, magazine covers, and even John Oliver's comedic documentaries on HBO's "Last Week Tonight".

Constituencies that have traditionally opposed free trade agreements (FTAs) are now extolling their virtues, and countries not known for their free trade sensibilities - including China, Russia, and France - are nominating themselves as the defenders of the global trade system.

Please or to continue reading the full article. Learn more about ST PREMIUM.

Enjoy unlimited access to ST's best work

  • Exclusive stories and features on multiple devices
  • In-depth analyses and opinion pieces
  • ePaper and award-winning multimedia content
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 27, 2018, with the headline 'Time big business lives up to 'doing well by doing good' pledges'. Print Edition | Subscribe