Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Global Competition Is Changing Our World

Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Global Competition Is Changing Our World

Article excerpt

Global competition is forcing us to reassess our values and institutions. The Clinton Administration will take a new approach to the issue, and this in turn will have an important effect on business climates at the local level. Thus it is appropriate that the National League of Cities should choose "Cities and Towns in the Global Economy" as the topic of its 1993 "Futures Forum."

World economic events have a profound impact on America's towns, cities and major metropolitan regions. Whether it is the collapse of the GATT agreement over European farm subsidies, the debate over ratification of the North American Free Trade Agreement, competition from Asia and elsewhere in our basic manufacturing sector, or tensions over intellectual property rights protection, global economic issues cannot be ignored.

As local public officials, we are all directly involved in sustaining our various regions' economic competitiveness. We establish the business climate. We maintain those services such as waste disposal, transportation and police protection, that allow businesses to function. We provide education to our children and infrastructure to the entire community. Our success or failure at providing these services directly affect our business communities' ability to compete.

Americans grew accustomed to a status of superpower in both military and economic affairs, believing our economic system to be the best and that others should adhere to our rules. In reality, other societies organize their economies by a different set of rules; business, labor and government have very different relations than in our country. …

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