From an economic standpoint, the globalisation process amounts to the formation of an integrated market on a worldwide scale. This is a new phenomenon that is very difficult to understand using the traditional theories of international trade and finance. Nonetheless, the current globalisation process has some features in common with the growth phase experienced by the world economy towards the end of the nineteenth century. That phenomenon was mainly due to the Gold Standard regime and the ever-increasing freedom of movement of goods, financial capital and people (the great inter-continental migrations). Globalisation is a process that stems from a preceding phase of world economic development.