Countries race to limit, ban exports of masks, ventilators, other gear

Mar 30, 2020
Individual governments have defended decisions to keep medical equipment at home, arguing they must take care of their medical workers and patients first.
A program to monitor global protectionism found governments placed 46 different export controls on coronavirus-related safety supplies and machines this year. Above, masks are produced at factory in Germany on March 12.
Thomas Kienzle/AFP via Getty Images

U.S. tariffs boost trade tensions and protectionist theory

Jun 14, 2018
Beijing has special rules for the industries of tomorrow while Washington is protecting aging sectors.
A worker trims a newly cast steel slab at the NLMK Indiana steel mill in March in Portage, Indiana.
Scott Olson/Getty Images

Free trade gets a boost in Africa

Apr 13, 2018
Dozens of African nations signed on to a new trade deal. Some key nations still have not.
A vendor sells fruits and vegetables at the large market of Adjame, a popular district of Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, on Aug. 10, 2017. 
ISSOUF SANOGO/AFP/Getty Images

Europe mulls retaliation for possible U.S. tariffs

Mar 16, 2018
Fearing for its steel producers, the EU warns of retaliatory tariffs on U.S. exports.
European Union trade commissioner Cecilia Malmström gives a press conference at the European Commission Headquarters in Brussels on March 7, 2018.
ARIS OIKONOMOU/AFP/Getty Images

A helpful guide to trade terminology

Mar 2, 2018
Definitions for a few common terms you may hear in the debate over the recently announced steel and aluminium trade tariffs.
The World Trade Organization, headquartered in Geneva, acts like a referee. 

. 
Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images
The protectionist tendencies in today's political climate actually have roots reaching back to Alexander Hamilton.
Ken Garduno, Illustrator

You’ve got questions. We help you answer them.

Support nonprofit, independent journalism that makes you smarter.

If protectionism were a song it'd sound like this

Aug 11, 2017
A searing campaign song from 1896 sounds surprisingly modern.
This is the cover for the sheet music of the original "McKinley Protection" campaign song.
Columbia University Libraries

America's tense meeting with other top economies

Mar 20, 2017
The U.S. resists anti-protectionism agreement.
Participants in the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting pose for a photo in Baden-Baden in southern Germany on Friday.
THOMAS KIENZLE/AFP/Getty Images