BETWEEN THE fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the global pandemic of 2020, the global population grew from 5.2 billion to 7.7 billion. Yet the share living in extreme poverty fell from more than a third to less than 10 percent, according to the World Bank. In other words, hundreds of millions of premature deaths were avoided and a similar number of opportunities for human flourishing were created. While China accounted for much of the progress, World Bank data show that poverty fell at similar rates elsewhere. Not coincidentally, this colossal achievement occurred during three decades of U.S.-endorsed trade liberalization, which brought investment, jobs and income to previously destitute corners of the world.

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