By Suresh Kumar
Looking out of my hotel window in Singapore, I can see that trade is global in this island nation. Changi, its airport, like my last port of call, Frankfurt, is a crossroad of commerce to facilitate trade. Yet, I reflect that while terrorism is global, trade and immigration are becoming insular. The land of the free and the home of the brave was built by immigrants into a global powerhouse and a beacon for global trade. It now warily watches migrant caravans on the Tijuana border. We are not alone: the U.K. confronts its demons in the Windrush movement that threatens legal immigrants. Countries require skills and labor to compete globally to enhance affordability and prosperity. Insular trade and tariff threats — and counter threats — are not ping-pong diplomacy. They did not inspire confidence in China-USA trade discussions. An on-today, off-tomorrow trade policy (e.g., is the U.S. in or out of the Trans Pacific Partnership, do we agree on ground rules for NAFTA renegotiation, etc.) drains resources, erodes trust with trade partners, spooks markets, and inhibits wealth creation and prosperity for the farm, manufacturing, or service sectors, or for that matter, the healthcare industry.