01 May 2007 | Paul Snell
The majority of the public have a positive perception of globalisation, according to a new report.
Yet people remain concerned about the effects that international trade is having on labour standards and the environment.
The study, released last week by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and worldpublicopinion.org, interviewed people in 14 countries worldwide to study attitudes toward globalisation.
The Chinese were the most enthusiastic, with 87 per cent positive about its effects. Mexico and Russia were least favourable toward international trade (41 per cent).
All countries were positive about the impact on their country's economies, companies and consumers. Yet respondents in France, the US, Argentina and Russia all saw globalisation as negative for the environment. And most of the public favoured some form of minimum environmental standards being included in global trade agreements.
Many people believed globalisation was a threat to their job security, with 80 per cent of those surveyed in France and 67 per cent in the US voicing concern.
The report also found many business leaders believed any imposition of minimum labour standards would lead to a "race to the bottom", with companies moving to countries with less stringent labour laws.