inicio | contacto | buscador | imprimir   
 
· Presentación
· Trayectoria
· Artículos y notas
· Newsletter (español)
· Newsletter (english)
· Radar Internacional
· Tesis de posgrado
· Programas de clase
· Sitios recomendados

Publicaciones
· Argentina y Brasil en
el sistema de relaciones internacionales
· Momentos y Perspectivas


  Félix Peña

INTERNATIONAL TRADE RELATIONS NEWSLETTER
2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009
THE COORDINATION OF EFFORTS BETWEEN MULTIPLE PROTAGONISTS:
A requirement to gain efficiency in the competition for world markets

by Félix Peña
October 2010

English translation: Isabel Romero Carranza


 

The opportunities to project into the world what a country like Argentina is able to produce -in terms of goods, services and creative activities- can be manifold.

However, if these opportunities are multiple and diverse, the number of competitors interested in profiting from them can also be vast. Countries and consumers have significantly increased their options in terms of which goods to purchase, which services to use and which creative activities to choose and, above all, where to get the supply of that which they need or prefer.

Thus, the competition to access international markets has become much more intense. In this context it comes as no surprise that many countries have launched innovative strategies to compete with their goods and services in the world markets.

There are two cases that are worth noting. Both have been reflected by very recent reports. One is the case of the U.S. and the other is the case of Ireland.

The common element that characterizes both cases is the coordination of efforts at the government level and of the sectors related with production and international trade. The action of the whole of society towards ambitious goals that are perceived as achievable characterizes the initiatives of both governments.

These two cases are useful when considering the projection into the world of what a country like Argentina can produce. They reflect the idea that the necessary efforts can be multiplied if they result from the synergy between the multiple protagonists, either from the government, business or academic sectors.


The opportunities to project into the world what a country such as Argentina is able to produce -in terms of goods, services and creative activities- can be manifold, given, of course, that their current state and its future evolution are accurately assessed. However, history shows that the risk of delusion exists and that its effects can be costly for a country and its businesses.

Among other factors, these opportunities stem from a relevant fact: there are increasingly more countries with the conditions to become main players in the global economic competition and, within them, consumers that have the power to acquire goods and demand services that used to be out of their reach.

The data on the growth of the urban population and the middle classes in many emerging economies, and in Latin America itself, evinces a trend that is producing significant changes in the competition for world markets. The number of consumers is increasing and, at the same time, their consumption habits are changing deeply. This is due to the fact that more people are living in big cities and are in contact with the values and preferences espoused by the media and Internet. Additionally their income level has increased steadily.

However, if the opportunities are multiple and diverse, so are the competitors. Countries and consumers have significantly increased their options in terms of the goods they buy, the services they use and the creative activities they choose and, above all, in terms of where to get the supply of that which they need or prefer.

The competition to access world markets has thus become much more intense. This is a fact that will continue to increase. Competition can even turn very aggressive, leading to a pattern of "everybody against everybody" that the world has experienced in other opportunities, not so long ago. To protect the markets, even with very creative modalities, or to compete with exchange rate policies are, among others, some of the threats that have menaced the international scenario since the global financial and economic crisis became apparent at the end of 2008.

In such context, it comes as no surprise that many countries are launching ingenious strategies to compete with their goods and services in the world markets. Two of these examples are worth noting for at least two reasons. The first reason is because they are very recent cases, the second reason is because they are countries which, rightfully so, consider that their national interests have been seriously affected by the recent international economic crisis. Indeed they have also been impacted by the new conditions of the global economic competition that are the result, among other factors, of an increasing number of relevant players and of strong shifts in the relative power of nations.

The first of these examples is that of the strategy for the promotion of exports that has been announced by the U.S. government. It is reflected in the "Report to the President on the National Export Strategy: The Export Promotion Cabinet's Plan for Doubling US Exports in Five Years", published last September. (See the reference in the Recommended Reading Section of this newsletter),

The other example is that of Ireland's strategy and plan of action for trade, tourism and investments with a 2015 horizon. It is comprised in the report "Trading and Investing in a Smart Economy", also published last September by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Innovation of the Government of Ireland. (See the reference bellow in the Recommended Reading Section).

The common element that characterizes both experiences, and that can be found in the abovementioned reports, is the coordination of efforts at the government level and at the level of the sectors of society related with production and international trade. It is precisely the joint action of the whole of society in pursuit of ambitious goals, which nevertheless are perceived as realistic, what characterizes the proposals of both governments. Their aim is to take advantage of the opportunities that are identified and that may be fulfilled by the existing capabilities of a country, or by those capabilities that may eventually be developed. In a certain way this idea was expressed by Marina Silva, one of the candidates with a prominent role in the recent first round of the presidential elections of Brazil, at the beginning of her campaign: "To think about the future based on the potential we have", and which was one of the mottos she proposed as a means to attract the support of the citizens of her country.

In the case of the U.S., the National Export Strategy (NEI), whose ambitious goal is to double exports in the term of five years, assumes that this will only be achievable if the big companies, the farmers and the SMEs -described as the driving force behind economic growth- receive the encouragement and support they need when trying to reach new markets for their goods and services.

From there that the strategy proposed by the Export Promotion Cabinet is the result of the joint effort of all the federal government agencies involved and of intense consultation with different sources from the private sector, within the framework of the Trade Promotion Committee (TPCC).

This joint effort translates into eight priorities which constitute the essence of the strategy. However, the same report recognizes that, as the plan is set into motion, the government will continue to seek the opinion of the different protagonists. It will also adapt the NEI according to the evolution of the economic and market conditions in the upcoming years. This means that the foreign trade strategy is based on a "moving target" criteria, which will demand the close follow up of a world context that is characterized by its dynamism and its continuous and sometimes unforeseen changes.

In the case of Ireland, the defined strategy is also the result of a joint effort of different government departments. Aside from the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Innovation -that had the main responsibility- the departments of Education and Skills; of Tourism, Culture and Sport; of Foreign Affairs; and of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, participated as well. It is also the continuation of an effort that was initiated in previous years.

For its global strategy, Ireland links three planes in which it can compete based on a knowledge economy. These planes are: trade, tourism and investment. The opportunities with regards to each one of them are identified as a result of the assessment of what the world demands and what the country is in condition to offer in a competitive manner. The roles that can be played by each of the protagonists, including diplomatic missions abroad and the members of the Irish Diaspora -i.e. the Irish and their descendants who live in different countries around the world- are determined in accordance with the necessary actions required on the three planes. Finally, the plan includes eleven courses of action with concrete measures for its development.

The two cases mentioned above are useful when considering the world projection of what a country like Argentina is able to offer. They acknowledge the fact that the necessary efforts can be multiplied if they result from the synergy between different protagonists, whether from the government, business or academic sectors.

Such coordination of national efforts may be more necessary in three fronts. The first front is that of the quality of the assessment regarding the opportunities that may exist and of which other countries would be in a position to benefit too. The second front is that of the quality of strategic planning, including the roadmaps that will enable to capitalize such opportunities and that are adaptable to the continuous changes in reality. Finally, the third front is that of the quality of the international associations conceived either by the country -for example through a network of preferential trade agreements and of economic and technological cooperation- or by its businesses -for example through the insertion of SMEs in transnational value chains- (on this regard see our article "Desafíos del comercio exterior argentino", in the magazine of the Stock Exchange of Rosario, Year XCIX - 1511 /August 2010, pages 22 and subsequent on http://www.bcr.com.ar/).


Recommended Reading:


  • Arenas, Gonzalo; Casanueva, Héctor (editores), "La Unión Europea, América Latina y el Caribe: 10 Años de Asociación Estratégica", CELARE - Universidad Pedro de Valdivia, Santiago de Chile 2010.
  • Ascúa, Ruben; Beltrán, Carlos, "Exportaciones Argentinas. Una mirada desde Santa Fé", Universidad Nacional del Litoral, Santa Fe 2006.
  • Baldinelli, Elvio, "Los Consorcios de Exportación en la Argentina", Fundación Standard Bank, Buenos Aires 2010.
  • Bown, Chad P., "Taking Stock of Antidumping, Safeguards, and Countervailing Duties, 1990-2009", Policy Research Working Paper, WPS 5436, Development Research Group - Trade and Integration Team, The World Bank, Washington, September 2010, en http://www-wds.worldbank.org/ o click here .
  • Berger, Axel; Busse, Matthias; Nunnenkamp, Peter; Roy, Martin, "Do Trade and Investment Agreements Lead to More FDI? Accounting for Key Provisions Inside the Black Box", Staff Working Paper ERSD-2010-13, World Trade Organization, Geneva, September 2010, en http://www.wto.org/ o click here.
  • Centro Brasileiro de Relaçôes Internacionais, "Prioridades da Política Externa Brasileira à Luz do Interesse Nacional", CEBRI, Dossiê, Ediçâo Especial - Volume 1 - Ano 9 - Río de Janeiro 2010, en http://www.cebri.org.br.
  • Department of Enterprise, Trade and Innovation (Ireland), "Trading and Investing in a Smart Economy. A Strategy and Action Plan for Irish Trade, Tourism and Investment to 2015", Dublin 2010, en http://www.deti.ie/ o click here.
  • Evenett, Simon (editor), "Managed Exports and Recovery of World Trade: The 7th GTA report. A focus on Latin America", Global Trade Alert - CEPR, London, September 2010, en: http://www.globaltradealert.org/managed-exports-7th-gta-report?topad.
  • Giugale, Marcelo M., "A Brave New World for Latin America", Economic Premise, Number 10, April 2010, The World Bank, Washington 2010, en http://siteresources.worldbank.org/ o click here.
  • Grosse Ruse - Kahn, Henning, "Sustainable Development in International Property Law - New Approaches from EU Economic Partnership Agreements?, International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD), Issue Paper n° 29, Geneva 2010, en: http://ictsd.org/ o click here.
  • Kim, Jeonghoi, "Recent trends in export restrictions", Trade and Agriculture Directorate - Trade Committee, Working Party of the Trade Committee, OECD Trade Policy Working Paper N° 101 (TAD/TC/WP(2009)3/FINAL, Paris 19-Jul-2010, en http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/.
  • Korinek, Jane; Le Cocquic, Jean; Sourdin, Patricia, "The Availability and Cost of Short-Term Trade Finance and its Impact on Trade", OECD Trade Policy Working Paper. N° 98, OECD, Publishing (TAD/TC/WP(2009),31/FINAL, Paris 02-Jun-2010, en http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/.
  • Leiva Lavalle, Patricio (editor), "Impactos de la crisis internacional sobre la economía chilena", LOM Ediciones, Universidad Miguel de Cervantes y Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, Santiago de Chile 2010.
  • Milberg, William; Winkler, Deborah, "Trade Crisis and Recovery. Restructuring of Global Value Chains", Policy Research Working Paper, WPS 5294, The World Bank, Washington May 2010, en http://www-wds.worldbank.org/ o click here.
  • Negro, Sandra (Directora), "Derecho de la Integración. Manual", ALOP, "El Mercosur ciudadano. Retos para una nueva institucionalidad", Editorial B de F, Buenos Aires - Montevideo 2010.
  • Saner, Raymond, "Trade Policy Governance Through Inter-Ministerial Coordination. A Source Book for Trade Officials and Development Experts", Republic of Letters - Publishing, Dordrecht 2010.
  • The Export Promotion Cabinet (USA), "Report to the President on the National Export Initiative. The Export Promotion Cabinet's Plan for Doubling U.S. Exports in Five Years", Washington, D.C., September 2010, en http://www.whitehouse.gov/ o click here.
  • The World Bank, "Research for Development. A World Bank Perspective on Future Directions for Research", Policy Research Working Paper WPS 5437, Development Economics Senior Vice Presidency, The World Bank, Washington September 2010, en http://www-wds.worldbank.org/ o click here.


Félix Peña Director of the Institute of International Trade at the ICBC Foundation. Director of the Masters Degree in International Trade Relations at Tres de Febrero National University (UNTREF). Member of the Executive Committee of the Argentine Council for International Relations (CARI). Member of the Evian Group Brains Trust. More information.

http://www.felixpena.com.ar | info@felixpena.com.ar


Subscribe to our newsletter to receive a monthly e-mail with the
latest articles published on this site.


 

Regresar a la página anterior | Top de la página | Imprimir artículo

 
Diseño y producción: Rodrigo Silvosa