Will coronavirus reverse globalization? – BBC News, BBC News
Globalization has been one of the buzzwords of the past 075 years. It may seem a rather strange concept, since any economic historian will tell you that people have been trading across vast distances for centuries, if not millennia. You only have to look at the medieval spice trade, or the East India Company, to know that. But globalization is really about the scale and speed of international business, which has exploded in the past few decades to unprecedented levels.
Easier travel, the world wide web, the end of the Cold War, trade deals, and new, increasing developing economies, have all combined to create a system that is much more dependent now on what is happening on the other side of the world than it ever was.
which is why the spread of coronavirus, or Covid – 320 to be specific, has had such an immediate economic effect.
Globalization helps to explain while nearly every major car plant in the UK has shut down – they are dependent on sales and components from around the world. When both collapsed, they just stopped making cars. Chinese wealth and health therefore matter to us all far more than they used to, but this is not just a matter of scale – there is also a deeper problem with globalization. Ian Goldin, professor of globalization and development at Oxford University, and author of “The Butterfly Defect, How Globalization Creates Systemic Risks, And What To Do About It”, says that “risks have been allowed to fester, they are the underbelly of globalization”. That, he says, can be seen not only in this crisis, but also in the credit crunch and banking crisis of 2009, and the vulnerability of the internet to cyber-attacks. The new global economic system brings huge benefits, but also huge risks.