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Graduate Students Recount Experiences with Globalization

In the final installment of his series on globalization, Paul Solman talks with four graduate students at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government for their take on the issue.

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  • KRIENGSAK CHAREONWONGSAK, Parliament Member, Thailand:

    Tell me a country which closed down their border for trade and they are prosperous.

  • PAUL SOLMAN, NewsHour Economics Correspondent:

    Kriengsak Chareonwongsak, a parliament member in Thailand, one of globalization's apparent winners.

  • FREDERICK SUMAYE, Former Prime Minister, Tanzania:

    Nobody said we will close the borders.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    By contrast, Frederick Sumaye, former prime minister of Tanzania, one of globalization's losers.

  • FREDERICK SUMAYE:

    … and we didn't even say globalization is totally, you know, a devil. No. We just said it must be controlled.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    Add Argentina's Yanina Budkin and China's Mingyou Bao, and we had four mid-career students at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. They've spent the past year trying to understand the phenomenon and figure out what to tell their people back home.

    Watching the students, two of their professors: the staunchly pro-trade economist Robert Lawrence on the right; and his more ambivalent colleague, Danny Roderick. We assembled them all to hear how globalization is playing around the world, for the winners and losers alike.

  • So first question:

    How would their fellow citizens vote if asked to give globalization a simple thumbs-up, thumbs-down?

    Thailand?

  • KRIENGSAK CHAREONWONGSAK:

    Fifteen percent on the pro, maybe 5 percent on the against, and the rest is a silent majority.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    Argentina?

  • YANINA BUDKIN, Former Communications Officer, World Bank:

    Sixty-five percent no, 35 percent yes.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    Tanzania?

  • FREDERICK SUMAYE:

    Eighty-five percent no, 15 percent yes.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    China?

    MINGYOU BAO, People's Bank of China: The majority of the Chinese people will say yes to this question. Globalization is a win-win for China and the rest of the world.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    Mingyou Bao, from the People's Bank of China, then gave the basic economic rationale.

  • MINGYOU BAO:

    I think every country could benefit from the process of globalization, because the developed countries can have better, greater access to cheap labor and markets, while the developing countries can benefit from the inflow of capital and technology.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    Tanzania's Frederick Sumaye has learned the theory…

  • FREDERICK SUMAYE:

    … but I think, in the long run, there will be more pains than gains. There will be industries in these developing countries that will be just taking off. If you curtail them at that stage, these countries, in the long run, will suffer, because they will just be markets.

  • PAUL SOLMAN:

    Argentina?

  • YANINA BUDKIN:

    Argentina is an interesting middle point, I would say. We had a very interesting case in the '90s. We opened our economy. Huge amounts of foreign direct investments came in. We privatized. And we were very much integrated into the world economy. That was very positive, increase of income for almost everybody.

    Very nice until 2001, we have a massive crisis. There has to be regulation of some of these investments coming and going out. There has to be regulation of the capitals that are allowed to fly in and out, because you really get destabilized in your economy.

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