In Pictures: Strategies to Take off with Exports
Moving up the Value Chain
China mores up: Over time, entire industry sectors and even national economies can more up the value chain. While low-end exports are losing momentum in China, high-end exports are expected to grow by 30-40% annually in the next three to five years, with auto and software industries likely to increase even more, according to Deutsche Bank.
"Fair trade is good but countries have to produce something they sell. But it is also important to note that developing countries don't want to remain basket weavers. They don't just want to sell cocoa and coffee. They don't just want to sell cotton. They want to sell higher-value products."
Kandeh K. Yumkella, Director-General, UNIDO
Meeting business needs
"In the region, efforts have been made in training human resources in recent years, to be sure. But what can we do to improve this in the future, to have even more concrete results, to overcome problems of infrastructure, access credit and access to technology?"
Judit Guerrero, First Secretary, Nicaraguan Mission to the United Nations Office in Geneva
Build export sectors that target affluent consumers, such as specialized eco-, business- or agro-tourism services. The award-winning eco-resort at Chumbe Island in Zanzibar (Tanzania) is preserving the natural resources of the island through income from tourism, while raising environmental awareness among visitors and the local population through its various educational programmes and activities.
Investing in trademarks, geographic indicators of origin and other intellectual property initiatives can help countries add value to a variety of commodities, manufactured goods and services. Brazil is seeking to protect its national drink cachaca by negotiating agreements with the WTO and the European Union on intellectual property rights and national indicators of origin. While only 500,000 litres of cachaca were exported in 1995, 20 million litres were exported to more than 60 countries in 2003 and sales ore expected to rise to 38 million litres by 2010. (Source: Brazilian Cachaca Development Program)
"At the moment we export raw sugar. Now we are going to refine it to add value to our sugar and also produce ethanol. We already have companies in Swaziland who ore distilling the sugar."
Absalom Themba Dlamini, Prime Minister of Swaziland
From sugar came to ethanol
Swaziland is looking at ways to add value to sugar, its biggest industry,
From cocoa beans to Easter eggs
Brazil produced 21,400 tonnes of Easter eggs in 2007. Here, a worker prepares a chocolate Easter egg at a factory in Sao Paolo.
Diversifying into New Markets
Benefiting from market access
Employees of a Kenyan textile company produce clothing for the United States market. The signing of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) has opened new opportunities for the textile sector in Kenya. Within two years of qualifying for the AGOA, Kenya's exports of clothing and investment in its textile sector hove experienced remarkable growth. (Source: Kenyan Export Promotion Council)
Competing and selling: Dance with the Dragon
"Our industrial investors, we tell them, leam to dance with the Chinese, the Chinese Dragon, because they export so much. You have to face reality."
Enrique Mantilla, President of the Argentinean Chamber of Exporters (CERA)
Finding markets: Don't look back
Forget about reopening lost markets. There is no way to go back to COMECON markets. Bring new markets closer to companies, with market information, training skills and marketing skills because you cannot enter these markets without inventing and reinventing yourself and your business."
Costin Lianu, Director General, Ministry of Economy and Commerce, Romania
The Singapore-based leisure chain Banyan Tree, which has popularized new-age spa resorts in Asia, is branching out to Mexico in an ambitious bid to export Oriental style and hospitality to the Americas.
Winning backing for WTO
"Some five years ago, WTO, even in large cities in Russia, was something that seemed rather alien. But thanks to cooperation with the Chamber of Commerce and the Union of Entrepreneurs and Producers we have been able to overcome that rather negative attitude to entering WTO and establish dose cooperation with the business community in all regions of Russia."
Yuri Afanassiev, Senior Counsellor, Russian Federation
A Brazilian sports minicar maker Obvio! designed a small, eco-friendly car to respond to the needs of modern, urban and environmentally conscious consumers. The car will also include a dashboard computer allowing drivers to download music and digital radio streams. A first order of 50,000 cars has already been placed by a Californian company.
Developing non-traditional exports
A Colombian flower grower arranges a display of roses before meeting with German flower importers at an industry exposition in Bogota. Germany is the second largest market in Europe for Colombia's flower export business, which generates $680 million a year in sales.
New materials for new markets
An employee at the Krasnoyarsk non-ferrous metal plant works on a palladium jewellery collection. For the first time the Siberian factory has received a large order to make exclusive jewels for an Italian company. While palladium is quite difficult to work, it is becoming more and more attractive to jewellers and consumers.
New investment destinations
"For years we have seen a tremendous growth in our lending to Africa. Currently it is more than $200 million a year. This year we are expecting it to be $300 million."
Nik Najib Husain, Deputy Director, Trade Finance and Promotion Department, Islamic Development Bank, Saudi Arabia
"South-South cooperation has always been on important policy plank for India, and as part of this objective we are building a relationship of partnership for mutual benefit with Africa, not one of donor-recipient. We have shared a wide range of training facilities and project expertise. We have recently embarked upon an ambitious project to establish a pan-African e-network that hopes to bring the benefits of tele-education and tele-medicine to all 53 countries on the African continent. We need to explore the great potential of inter-regional trade linkages."
Nutan Kapoor Mahawar, First Secretary, Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations Office at Genera
Reducing intra-regional barriers
Recent research by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development shows that the potential benefit from freer South-South trade may indeed be at least as large as the gains that developing countries can obtain from better access to rich countries' markets (North-South trade). Intra-regional trade agreements in Latin America and the Caribbean, such as MERCOSUR or CARICOM, are fostering trade between neighbouring countries. For example, over the last 30 years, internal trade in the Andean common market grew five times faster than trade with outside partners. (Source: Oxfam)
Landlocked: Challenge, not destiny
"Of course, being landlocked is a challenge but it is not destiny. Being landlocked means facing not only physical and infrastructural challenges, but also psychological challenges expressed in terms of trade policy--which in turn affects the micro and enterprise levels. But it is not destiny. We can change it and we are trying."
"Our slogan in the Egyptian Business Women's Association is: financial independence gives you the power of choice and voice. We have a marketing committee that goes to women entrepreneurs to sea what products they have and what they need, such as product development, finishing and quality control. We bring them together into sectors--we have a very good sector for garments, textiles and jewellery. And we try to create marketing tools--brochures and CDs--and organize fairs locally, regionally and internationally. If they cannot be present, we make the contacts for them."
Asmani Asfour, Egyptian Business Women's Association
Bridging policy circles
"Cambodia is growing 8% a year but the number of poor is not going down. This is especially affecting youth and women ... We are talking about working together, but social issues are not in. Gender is not in. Women ore contributing actively, but often they are in the informal sector. How will we bring equity for women in trade policy? It's very difficult to be part of your meetings. This is one of first economic or trade meetings involving a Minister of Women's Affairs ... If we are to reach the MDGs [Millennium Development Goals], gender equity must be achieved in all sectors, including trade."
Ing Khantha Phavi, Minister of Women's Affairs, Cambodia
Beyond market access
"If you only provide market access through trade agreements, you have the sound of one hand clapping. If you don't provide countries the opportunity to use the market access benefits that they get in trade agreements, you haven't done anything.
"The 'ACCESS!" programme addresses on issue we also face in Canada--the systemic barriers to access to services and economic development that face women in particular. The programme addresses economic, cultural and social barriers to women entrepreneurs" access, by providing, in partnership with ITC, access to export market information and training. We put women entrepreneurs in direct contact on one side with exporters and mentors, and on the other side with buyers and importers ... Thus far the results have been very positiva ... [with] training to about 30 trainers who, in turn, trained about 300 African businesswomen. Over 70 enterprises benefited from mentorship services in areas like preparing exports strategies, negotiating with buyers, planning trade fairs and the like."
Don Stephenson, Ambassador of Canada to the WTO
Investing in Trade Support
Changing needs, changing roles
"Despite favourable trade trends, competition continues to rise, and national trade bodies find themselves at the centre of national effort to ensure that their client enterprises, particularly small firms, become or remain globally competitive. This requires trade promotion organizations (TPOs) to be more proactive, to constantly seek ways of improving their customer relations management, establishing closer and longer-term relationships.
"There is also a change in how they deliver trade support services. TPOs at the cutting edge no longer speak of export promotion, or even internationalization of the firm, but are now focused on business development--helping the client firm to be more competitive and to grow its business internationally. Clients require more of TPO staff, which now need to be better trained, function as consultants with a strategic approach and harness external expertise where necessary."
Conference summary extract, World Conference of Trade Promotion Organizations, Buenos Aires, 2007.
Helping firms compete
The latest winners of the World TPO Awards reflect the new trends in supporting businesses to make their mark in the global economy. Mauritius Enterprise, winner of the award from a small country, is working to reposition the traditional sugar sector and re-invigorate the textile and clothing sectors. In similar ways, the other award winners from Zambia, Mongolia and El Salvador are helping to make their country's export strategy "happen".
Finpro, "Best of the Best" TPO award winner, says, "A small economy (such as Finland's) is like a mouse surrounded by big fat cats. The key to success does not lie in volume or efficiency, but in the ability to more more quickly than the others." With a small population of 5.3 million people and a small economy, Finland has had to make a big effort to link its industry to the global economy. "We think beyond exports," says Finpro. "We operate as a window to the future of the global business for Finnish industry." Consulting accounts for two-thirds of Finpro's chargeable revenue.
Export promotion makes it mark
ProChile, best TPO from a developing country, is bringing life to the new country brand, "Chile: All Ways Surprising" ProChile has helped position Chilean food and wine as high-quality products by organizing food and wine tasting events, and by linking up with well-known chefs of famous restaurants.
In just ten years, Chile's wine exports jumped from $30 million to 5600 million per year, and the number of exporters grew from 12 to 170. Its 40 wineries produce about 3% of the world's wine exports, in terms of volume. (Sources: BBC, Reuters.)
ITC invests in trade support
In order to harness the collective energy and resources of its network of stakeholders--policymakers in government and the business community, exporting enterprises and trade support institutions--ITC is working more closely with its partner institutions by:
* building know/edge: collecting and disseminating best practices of trade support institutions;
* ensuring institutional capacity: reinforcing capacity to deliver needed services; and
* promoting partnership and networks.
Empowering our networks
"Trade is not about making things happen spontaneously. It takes a number of trade support institutions, private sector efforts and public sector initiatives to actually see a transformation. We can work with our partners to create the architecture for integrated export development. We want to empower the considerable networks that ITC has within the world."
Patricia R. Francis, Executive Director, ITC
Make things happen
"We in the WTO are in the business of making things possible. Organizations like the ITC are in the business of making things happen."
Pascal Lamy, Director-General, WTO
"Some countries that participated in the Integrated Framework have told us, we have already been studied enough: now we need solutions. Part of the homework we need to do with ITC immediately is taking those diagnoses and seeing how we build programmes now to deliver services to countries."
Kandeh K. Yumkella, Director-General, UNIDO
Common country strategies
"We need to work together so that we can map out common strategies so that a country will have a fully-fledged, complete programme that can make them [export-]ready in terms of supply capacity, rule of law and infrastructural framework, so that they can fully participate in the global trading system."
Supachai Panitchpakdi, Secretary General, UNCTAD
Bolivia is working with ITC and a range of partners to boost exports. One outstanding example is the creation of a new packaging institute, with ISO certified laboratories, accredited by the World Packaging Organization and the Latin-American Packaging Union. The Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs and the Swiss Import Promotion Programme are partners in these projects, which are carried out with several Bolivian Chambers of Exporters.…
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Article title: In Pictures: Strategies to Take off with Exports. Contributors: Not available. Magazine title: International Trade Forum. Issue: 2 Publication date: April-June 2007. Page number: 9+. © 1998 International Trade Centre UNCTAD/GATT. COPYRIGHT 2007 Gale Group.
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