Pressure by Cuba will not pay off

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This past week, United States relations with Cuba were back in the spotlight. The Trump administration announced new restrictions on travel and trade with Cuba. The rollback of Obama’s measures towards the island’s government is a promise President Trump had made some months ago. The steps are reasonable, since  Obama’s agreement with Cuba was insufficient  and inequitable. The U.S. gave much and received little in return.

It has been more than a year since the normalization of relations. Clearly, Cuba has been unwilling to change rapidly, and past treaties were insufficiently in achieving a new robust track. One example is the continued discriminatory practices against Americans in the island. On a recently booked trip I had to Cuba, for example, it turned out that hotel rates were unjustifiably much higher for Americans than for Europeans, so I cancelled my plans.

The intention of the hotel was to give a silent retaliation for the years of economic embargo. The focus was on individuals that had no say on the matter and also no ability to change or improve American relations with Havana.

In fact, with the new tight restrictions, American individuals can no longer visit Cuba and groups need a license from the Treasury Department to visit the country. The Cuban tourism industry will feel the effects of U.S. government encouragement of Americans to stay in private houses and avoid hotels and restaurants connected to or owned by the military and security services.

After decades of adverse relationships, isn’t it time to bury the hatchet and bring out the peace pipe. For that, Cuba needs to take a step back and accept new policies which are fair, non-discriminatory and welcoming to visitors, both American and Cuban alike. As a fair trade and commerce relationship is not yet a reality, the United States government needed to demonstrate a stronger position in order to encourage appropriateness.

In addition, it is important to note that seeking improved relations with Havana does not mean forgetting the violations against human and civil rights during the Castro government. The population’s welfare is equally relevant as economic aspects in diplomatic relations, and actions such as expropriations and unjustified prison sentences should still be remembered and repaired. Curative marketing evaluates, carries physical accosting, debt, and destruction until true restitution is made.

Much remains to be done by Cuba, particularly since the United States has already long ago initiated important steps to reflect its own atonement. Cuban pressure to repay for earlier inequities will not work. Only if both parties commit to a fair relationship, will we see commerce between the countries grow and bring benefits and economic growth.

Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker Scheduled to Speak on Africa in Atlanta

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Spotlight on… Secretary Penny Pritzker Atlanta Keynote on Business in Africa

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Africa, Middle East, and India
San Antonio, TX         May 1-2

Los Angeles, CA        June 3-4

Free Trade Agreement Countries
Detroit, MI                  Sept. 9-10

China and Gateway Countries
New York, NY            Oct. 7-8

The Americas
Charlotte, NC             Oct. 29-31

Sub-Saharan Africa
Atlanta, GA                Nov. 5-6

Healthcare and Life Sciences
Minneapolis, MN       Nov. 17-18

Global Sustainable Solutions
Silicon Valley, CA       Feb 9-11

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“The Discover Global Markets was a huge success for us. We believe this is definitely the best approach to connecting America with Global Markets and this facet should be moved to the fore front with regular scheduled meetings utilizing as many countries as possible.  I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and will recommend others to follow this path if they want to succeed in the Global Market. This was a job well done by all and I was extremely impressed at its execution.”

– Michael Wayne Staney
Chairman, Paradigm Shift Technologies Group, Truth or Consequences, New Mexico

Secretary Pritzker

Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker

Secretary Pritzker is a key leader of the Doing Business in Africa Initiative, connecting more and more U.S. companies to opportunities on the continent.

She’s scheduled to speak at DISCOVER GLOBAL MARKETS: Sub-Saharan Africa in Atlanta, November 5-6.

Register now to hear about how the government will continue to develop the U.S-Africa commercial relationship, creatingmore opportunities for your business.

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At this DISCOVER GLOBAL MARKETS event you will also have the opportunity to meet and hear from private sector experts as well as U.S. Commercial Diplomats representing the following countries:

Angola, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, South Africa, and Tanzania

Want to meet and hear insights from U.S. Commercial Diplomats from other parts of the world?

The Americas (October 29-31, 2014)

Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Uruguay

Healthcare & Life Services (November 17-18, 2014)

Brazil, Canada, Chile Colombia, European Union (Regulations), Greece, India, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, and Vietnam

Global Sustainable Solutions (February 9-11, 2015)

Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, Israel, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Nordics, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, U.A.E., and the U.K.

Malaysia proffers Korea commerce during high-level trade trip

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Along with Malaysian Ambassador Dato’ Rohana Ramli, the country’s minister of international trade and industry, Mustapa Mohamed, directed three seminars on “Business Opportunities in Malaysia” in late September in Seoul and in similar meetings in Tokyo from Oct. 1-2.

The seminars were aimed at updating the South Korean business community on current economic developments in Malaysia, and highlighting new opportunities offered by Malaysia, particularly for investment and trade in the manufacturing and services sectors. Malaysia has maintained annual average GDP growth of around 5 percent over the past three years.

A platoon of 47 executives and trade experts accompanied the minister in Seoul, representing a slew of economic sectors that the Southeast Asian country is promoting here, such as green technology, high-tech businesses, biotechnology, advanced electronics and automobiles.

More than 350 local executives, scholars and trade experts participated in the seminars.

In his capacity as chairman of the seminar, Ahn Choong-yong, professor of economics at ChungAng University, delivered the opening message followed by a keynote address by the Malaysian trade minister.

IMF CEO as a Pastor
Listening to the IMF Managing Director, Christine Lagarde, speaking to journalists at the  concluding aspects of the meetings, one could  not but liken her message to what a pastor would tell  his congregation.  A church is supposed to be a place of providing succour to all manner of people: the highly indebted; people with failed marriages; people who are lost to addictions and all manner of miscreants. The role of the pastor is to give them message of hope which if allowed to sink can ultimately sanctify those bad individuals and turn them into men and women of envy. The reality however is that the pastor can only dish out tips, how the message he preaches  transforms is left to the individual members of the congregation. While some can stay on indefinitely without witnessing any change, others who put into practice what the pastor is teaching may become whole and functioning normally.


No More Silos! (Part 2)

Setting the Stage: Engagement in the Global Marketplace

Francisco Sanchez, the undersecretary for international trade at the Commerce Department who leads the International Trade Administration and heads up its work to improve the global marketplace and help U.S. firms compete overseas, opened the March 2013 meeting on trade policy and international marketing (View photos of the event here).

On the third anniversary of the National Export Initiative, which had anticipated a doubling of U.S. exports within five years, Sanchez told the group that everyone has to be engaged globally.

U.S. exports, with a volume of $2.2 trillion in 2012, support 10 million jobs, which typically tend to pay 18% more than jobs only for domestic production. In 2008, Sanchez stated, 47% of Americans saw trade as a major threat. In 2013, 55% see trade as a positive dimension. Sanchez sees a new U.S. trade emphasis on Africa and Brazil, and key emerging opportunities through transpacific and transatlantic partnerships. He views export promotion as a new form of economic development.

This article is a part of a series written by Michael Czinkota and Charles Skuba who report on the March 2013 meeting on trade policy and international marketing, a collaboration between the American Marketing Association, Georgetown University and the U.S. International Trade Administration. View part 1 hereGuest writer Charles Skuba teaches international business and marketing at Georgetown University. He served in the George W. Bush Administration in trade policy positions in the U.S. Department of Commerce.

No More Silos! (Part 1)

A March 2013 meeting on trade policy and international marketing – hosted by the American Marketing Association, Georgetown University, and the U.S. International Trade Administration – was designed to let fresh air into the mature structures of human activity, to understand what markets, customers and suppliers need, and to appreciate the interconnectedness. No more silos!

Why is international marketing of great importance?

For one, the opportunities are there: 95 % of the world’s population lives outside of the United States. We are facing a tipping point for emergent and growing demand from all of these people, and we need to compete for interest and purchases.

International marketing also represents a strong footstool with three legs— policy, business and academia—and our meeting addressed them simultaneously. We further reinforced these three legs by looking at issues from 17 country views. If you consider the issue of computer security from a U.S. and from a Chinese perspective, different viewpoints will emerge quite quickly. This tells us that unless we communicate and understand each other’s perspectives, there is little chance of making progress.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of when both the Commerce Department and the business and academic sectors first looked jointly at trade policy and international marketing. It made sense to revisit the area and to determine what we have learned, and where we need to go. These 25 years reflect a generation during which we had enormous innovations, the joining of new partners, the creation and burst of bubbles, particularly in the finance field, and a renewed emphasis on international collaboration. Subsequent posts will look at the issues that international policy and marketing leaders see as being of paramount importance.

This article is a part of a series written by Michael Czinkota and Charles Skuba who report on the March 2013 meeting on trade policy and international marketing, a collaboration between the American Marketing Association, Georgetown University and the U.S. International Trade Administration. Guest writer Charles Skuba teaches international business and marketing at Georgetown University. He served in the George W. Bush Administration in trade policy positions in the U.S. Department of Commerce.