Embrace free trade to defeat COVID-19
June 10, 2020
By Philip Stevens
At the 73rd World Health Assembly, public health officials from dozens of countries gathered virtually to discuss strategies to defeat COVID-19.
One strategy worth pursuing? Tearing down trade barriers.
Every country needs access to medical supplies as cheaply as possible. But many governments raise the price of these supplies by levying needless tariffs on medicines, personal protective equipment, and vaccines. Ecuador, for instance, imposes a 55 percent levy on personal protective equipment. And India charges a 10% tax on imported vaccines.
It'd be wise for all public h...