ECS4580: Trade and Multinational Enterprises – Essay Writing

ECS4580: Trade and Multinational Enterprises – Essay Writing

Assignment Task

Assessment Scheme:

This coursework requires around 2000 words (inclusive). This work is expected to be in an essay style and has to be completed individually.

The Topic of the Coursework:

The Benefits and Costs of Free Trade, and its Validity after the Covid-19 Pandemic Era

1) (Introduction) What is the free trade argument about: [Importance and Objectives]

2) (Literature Review) What are the benefits and costs of free trade [what theories, methods, and data have been employed by other authors? Relevant and Focused]

3) (Analysis and Discussion) What are the possible or your anticipated impacts of covid-19 on international trade [apply the relevant theories, data, examples, references, and evidence, to make your own analysis and discussion]

4) (Conclusions) Do you think the free trade argument is still valid? [Summarise the main points from your analysis and discussion]


1) The coursework must be your own work and in your own words. Avoid plagiarism and copying from a colleague. When utilising books and journal articles, you must make sure that you reference the authors correctly. Failure to do this will be penalised. Students are advised to note the University’s regulations in section F of the University courses handbook, on ‘The infringement of University Regulations’, as these regulations will be enforced.

2) The coursework must follow academic convention and style (you can refer to Harvard Referencing, appropriate in-text citations etc.) The assessment board will objectively reward those students who at least try to follow the rules and penalise those that do not.

3) The coursework must be word-processed, 1.5 spaced, It must be submitted with a cover page which contains assessment related information, i.e., module title, module code, submission date, student name, and word count.


Free trade refers to a policy in which countries allow the free flow of goods and services across borders without any barriers such as tariffs or quotas. The fundamental argument for free trade is that it promotes economic growth by allowing countries to specialize in the production of goods and services they are most efficient at producing. This essay aims to discuss the benefits and costs of free trade and evaluate whether the free trade argument is still valid after the Covid-19 pandemic era.

Literature Review:

The theory of comparative advantage is one of the most influential theories in economics that supports free trade. According to this theory, countries can benefit from trade by specializing in the production of goods and services they are most efficient at producing, even if they are less efficient in producing all other goods and services. This leads to increased efficiency and lower production costs, resulting in lower prices for consumers and higher profits for producers.

There are several benefits of free trade, including increased competition, lower prices for consumers, and increased efficiency in production. Free trade also leads to increased foreign direct investment, which can create new job opportunities and increase economic growth. In addition, free trade can improve access to foreign markets, leading to greater exports and increased economic output.

However, there are also costs associated with free trade. One of the main costs is that it can lead to job losses in certain sectors that are unable to compete with foreign producers. This can lead to unemployment and lower wages for workers. Additionally, free trade can lead to a race to the bottom in terms of labor and environmental standards as countries try to attract foreign investment by lowering their standards.

Analysis and Discussion:

The Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on international trade. The pandemic led to a decline in global trade, as countries imposed restrictions on the movement of goods and services to contain the spread of the virus. The pandemic has also highlighted the importance of domestic production, as countries have struggled to obtain essential goods such as medical equipment and pharmaceuticals.

The pandemic has also raised concerns about the concentration of production in a few countries and the vulnerability of global supply chains. This has led to calls for greater regionalization of production and the creation of more resilient supply chains.

In terms of the free trade argument, the pandemic has highlighted the need to balance the benefits of free trade with the need for greater domestic production and supply chain resilience. The pandemic has also raised concerns about the impact of free trade on domestic industries and the need to ensure that workers are not left behind in the transition to a more globalized economy.

Free trade has both benefits and costs, and its validity after the Covid-19 pandemic era depends on how it is implemented and balanced with other policy objectives. The pandemic has highlighted the importance of domestic production and supply chain resilience, but it has not invalidated the argument for free trade. Instead, it has highlighted the need for a more nuanced and balanced approach to trade policy that takes into account the needs of workers and the importance of domestic industries.

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