Trade has been one of the main transmission channels of the financial and economic crisis to developing countries where many jobs were lost in export sectors. This was largely due to a reduced demand for goods in industrialised economies as well as to a lack of access to credit for the financing of exports.
At the international level, calls against protectionism (that is, increasing barriers to trade) have been manifold. These calls have been made in the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Global Jobs Pact, G-20 Declarations and government declarations in organisations such as the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Despite these calls and the common understanding that closing off markets would have negative effects and risk a further deepening of the crisis, several countries have resorted to protectionist measures.