GENEVA, Nov. 22 (Xinhua) -- While globalization has brought progress overall, not all people have been able to benefit from it, World Trade Organization (WTO) chief Roberto Azevedo said Wednesday.
"Many people feel disconnected from economic progress," said the WTO director general, "We need to respond to this situation. This means using all tools available to promote growth, development, job creation and inclusivity."
To support this, the WTO launched the 2017 World Trade Report as well as a joint report with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, aimed at making trade an engine of growth for all.
Azevedo was speaking at a high-level seminar at which Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofvens said trade is the engine in the global economy.
"We have been able to buy things we do not produce ourselves," said the prime minister. "Simply put: trade has made our country grow."
Trade is an important factor that has taken Sweden from being one of the poorest countries "on the outskirts of Europe" to one at the forefront of the global economy. "It took us about 100 years, and the foundation was the global market economy, free trade, openness and competition. But also...smart production, innovation and social security," and a global market economy, said Lofvens.
He cautioned, however, that when inequalities increase, as the world has witnessed, and a few people amass wealth at the expense of the many, the economy in the long run is destabilized.
"We must address growing public skepticism over the benefits of free trade and globalization, and rising distrust in political solutions," said Lofvens.