free trade


Definition of free trade

: trade based on the unrestricted international exchange of goods with tariffs used only as a source of revenue

Examples of free trade in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Photo: Jason Alden/Bloomberg News A confab for the global elite, the World Economic Forum celebrates open markets and free trade. Deborah Ball, WSJ, "Executives in Davos Put Brave Face on Jittery Mood," 22 Jan. 2019 The president jettisoned a free trade agreement with Pacific Rim nations last year, and has threatened to tear up the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico. John Fritze, USA TODAY, "Trump slaps steep tariffs on hundreds of Chinese products," 15 June 2018 The peso sank to its weakest in more than a year earlier Tuesday on concern the U.S. may leave the North America Free Trade Agreement and try to negotiate two separate free trade deals with Mexico and Canada. Eric Martin,, "Mexico strikes back, levying tariffs on U.S. pork, steel, whiskey," 5 June 2018 Trump’s campaign promises to punish American companies that export jobs were anathema to Heritage’s 45-year history of support for free trade, not to mention the interests of some of its biggest donors. Jonathan Mahler, New York Times, "How One Conservative Think Tank Is Stocking Trump’s Government," 20 June 2018 Canada’s Conservatives continue to support the Prime Minister’s efforts to make the case for free trade. Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "Donald Trump unifies the nation (Canada, that is).," 11 June 2018 The tariffs have also drawn fire from Republican members of Congress, many of whom have long argued for free trade. David Lauter,, "Singapore-bound, but first, a fight with U.S. allies over trade," 8 June 2018 Global stocks and the dollar slumped on Wednesday after a strong White House advocate for free trade resigned, fanning fears that President Donald Trump will proceed with protectionist tariffs and risk a trade war. Bart Jansen, USA TODAY, "Gary Cohn's resignation from Trump administration put markets, business world on edge," 7 Mar. 2018 Trump has already pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade deal and has vowed to withdraw from the North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) unless it is revised. Vivian Salama, NBC News, "Trump’s State of the Union theme: ‘A safe, strong and proud America’," 27 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'free trade.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of free trade

1766, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for free trade

Last Updated

5 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for free trade

The first known use of free trade was in 1766

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More Definitions for free trade

free trade


English Language Learners Definition of free trade

: a system of trade between nations in which there are no special taxes placed on imports

More from Merriam-Webster on free trade Encyclopedia article about free trade

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