Sunday, February 8, 2009

Letter to Minster Day

As promised this is a copy of the letter e-mailed to Darcy Rezac, MD of The Board of Trade regarding the US proposed protectionist policy.

I was surprised to find out that my views were as strong as they are... but I stand by what I say.  I think it's a short term knee jerk reaction rather than a long a sustainable long term strategy.

Hopefully they'll reconsider their position and support trade rather than cut it off at the knees.


Dear Minister Day

I wish to speak to the concern I and many of my fellow business colleagues share around the current proposed protectionist plan in the US and how this can potentially impact not just ourselves, but also the long term economic health of the US and the global economy.

Protectionism is, in my view, an economic knee jerk reaction that addresses issues with only a short term view.  If it persists or spreads the danger is that the wheels of trade will cease to be lubricated as goods and services stop passing across international borders and any 'recession' or 'economic down turn' will last longer and result in tougher, harder times for peoples, organizations and governments across the globe.

By keeping global trade alive and thriving economies increase the number of potential markets for their own goods and services, thereby helping their own manufacturing and services community weather any economic storm.  I would be very surprised if anyone actually wanted the problems caused by the instability and alleged poor judgement of the financial sector to last any longer than need be.  Closing borders to trade and the potential domino effect that would cause, in my view, would do exactly that.

A much more practical solution for the US and other world economies to consider would be to invest in their companies (manufacturing and service) by helping them to innovate, upgrade and compete.  This coupled with real governmental help in accessing new opportunities abroad and then cultural training/support to facilitate appropriate marketing strategies to sell to new trading partners will open doors and ensure future success.  These steps will also have the added benefit of updating and strengthening the manufacturing and service base upon which countries rely.

Rather than closing down trade opportunities, shutting down innovation and stopping marketing activities, economies need to do the opposite in order to thrive.

There is a whole world out there, I would suggest it is foolhardy for any country to turn their back on such a remarkable opportunity, let alone one with such an impressive record of innovation and market awareness that the US currently enjoys.

I do hope they re-consider their position and choose to lead the world in their forward thinking and sustainable economic strategies.

Yours sincerely

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