What is Foreign Policy?
A foreign policy is a strategy or policy implemented by governments as a form of protection of national interest. It sets guidelines on how a particular country deals with other countries in various disciplines like in trade and economics, immigration, and law enforcement among others. With the advent of globalization, more and more countries are forced to formulate policies for international relations for purposes of peaceful and beneficial cooperation.
In the case of trade and economics, a particular country will implement certain rules and guidelines to control the import and export of products. The basic goal is to gain from the exchange of goods between countries. One country for example may allow the import of certain raw materials from other countries without imposing taxes and tariffs in exchange for the export of own goods and services.
In the field of immigration, national governments also follow certain principles for a variety of reasons. In some countries, foreigners are allowed easy entry without much paper work and taxes to compliment the country’s tourism and travel industries. Others have special arrangements with other nations to cater to the needs of possible emigrants. Countries like the US have specific rules on how many people can enter their country on an immigrant status. They also limit those who get working permits and visas to protect their own citizens from losing their jobs to new immigrants.
The concept of foreign policy actually dates back to primitive times. People in the past already had some basic rules in dealing with people from foreign lands. Europe in the 17th century already had transactions and negotiations between countries for cooperation and trade. Eventually, the League of Nations was established in 1919 after World War I. This organization became the first international cooperation group for many nations involved in dealing with the concerns and issues between member countries.