Trade: Detour into Protectionism

During the European Economic Community's eleven years of existence, no member has poured more vinegar into the wine than France. Last week, as the Common Market prepared to take the historic step of eliminating all remaining internal tariff barriers, the French acted according to form. Faced with a worsening balance of payments problem, Charles de Gaulle's government marred the milestone by announcing a protectionist package of import quotas and export subsidies.

The measures will affect at least 10% of France's total imports and a far bigger share of its exports. They include ceilings on such goods from abroad as autos, trucks,...

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