The Next Great Globalization:
A Force for Good?
In 1960 South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world, with an average income per person less than that in many countries in sub-Saharan Africa. It was only minimally engaged in trading goods and services with the rest of the world,1 and the flow of capital from abroad into South Korea was minuscule, amounting to less than $400 million per year. Today South Korea is a member of the rich-countries club, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and the booming metropolis of Seoul looks like any prosperous, world-class city. International trade is a key feature of the Korean economy, with over a third of the economy engaged in exporting, and the annual net flow of foreign capital into South Korea has increased over twentyfold to more than $10 billion.2
What has happened to South Korea to allow it to grow like this? Globalization, the increasing involvement of its economy in world markets.3
Globalization is a term that is often used imprecisely and can mean many things. This book focuses on economic globalization, the opening up of economies to flows of goods, services, capital, and businesses from other nations that integrate their markets with those abroad.
Economic globalization takes many forms. When a New Yorker orders a Mercedes that is made in Germany, rather than a Cadillac built in America, she is taking advantage of the globalization process. When MGM sells a DVD of one