Harrow Hong Kong’s Sixth Form Economists were delighted to have an audience with Mr Jesús Seade, Undersecretary for North America for the Mexican Government, this week.
Mr Seade played an instrumental role for Mexico in the creation of the World Trade Organisation, and subsequently became the founding deputy head of the WTO. More recently, he was the chief negotiator for Mexico in the negotiation of the USMCA trade agreement (NAFTA 2).
Years 12-13 Economics pupils were given a point of view often missing from a textbook description of international trade theory; namely, the losses caused by trade, which explains why there is often vehement domestic resistance to it.
Mr Seade spoke about the painful social adjustments that had to be made in Japan, Korea, China, the US and UK as trade advanced and markets opened over the past century. This led to a discussion about the importance of the WTO in facilitating negotiation and co-operation to mitigate the conflict caused by trade.
Finally, Mr Seade answered questions about the China-US trade war, the reasons behind the changes in the new NAFTA treaty, and why the Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) is so contentious, especially to NGOs seeking the development of social and environmental policies.
Harrow Hong Kong extends its sincere gratitude to Mr Seade for his valuable time and the unique insight and perspectives offered to the pupils during this bespoke session.