The International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the World Trade Organization, have urged G20 leaders to boost trade by lowering trade barriers and trade-destroying subsidies while developing policies to support workers who have lost their jobs.
In a joint statement the multilateral bodies called for decisive action at the G20 Summit to boost incomes and accelerate growth, saying the well being of billions depended on trade.
“The good news is that when it comes to trade, we do not need to choose between inclusiveness and economic growth,” the statement said.
The organisations argued that incomes and living standards across the world have been improved by trade openness and that the recent global trend towards protectionism had hurt growth.
But ‘reinvigorating trade’ must also go hand-in-hand with measures to share its gains and support workers who are put out of work, they said.
“Without the right supporting polices, adjustment to structural changes can bring a human and economic downside that is often concentrated, sometimes harsh, and has too often become prolonged.”
The organisations recommend job search assistance, retraining, and vocational training, adaptable education systems and housing, credit and infrastructure policies as some measures to improve worker mobility.
Trade reform is necessary for productivity and income growth in both advanced and developing countries, they said pressing for action.
“Now is the time to press ahead with trade reforms that can deliver greater prosperity for all.”