Here we consider the history of international trade and in particular, the trading regimes that were operated by the now advanced nations during their periods of economic development that enabled them to become advanced, industrial economies. None of the successive waves of capitalist development involved free trade: From the mercantilism of Britain and the US, the developmental state in Japan and reconstruction of Europe and Japan in the immediate post-World War II period, the use of state intervention and trade tariffs was the orthodox policy. Thus, the history of international trade illustrates that economic development requires protectionism and a central role for the state.