On Monday, January 22, 2024, the Institute for Education (IFE) hosted an off-the-record conversation between Ambassador Katherine Tai, United States Trade Representative, and Demetri Sevastopulo, the Financial Times’s U.S.-China correspondent. The salon took place at the elegant new residence of Her Excellency Geraldine Byrne Nason, Ireland’s Ambassador to the United States. Ambassador Nason, Coach Kathy Kemper (IFE Founder and CEO), and Dr. R. David Edelman (IFE President) presided.
Among the attendees were U.S. government officials, diplomats from some two dozen embassies, CEOs and high-ranking representatives of foundations and Fortune 500 companies, and prominent journalists—a testament not only to the critical geoeconomic and geopolitical importance of Ambassador Tai’s work but also to the strong demand for her thoughts on adapting trade policy to a rapidly changing global economy.
Ambassador Tai explained that it is essential for trade policy to be worker-centric, prioritizing the resilience of the American middle class. She also noted that through the coronavirus pandemic, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and an escalating crisis in the Middle East, the United States, its allies, and its partners have shifted their focus toward strengthening supply chains for a range of vital commodities and de-risking from competitors. She hopes to advance these efforts over the coming year and further reconceptualize America’s thinking about and conduct of trade policy.