A fundamental shift is occurring in the world economy. We are moving rapidly away from a world in which national economies were relatively self-contained entities, isolated from each other by barriers to cross-border trade and investment; by distance, time zones, and language; and by national differences in government regulation, culture, and business systems. And we are moving toward a world in which barriers to cross-border trade and investment are tumbling; perceived distance is shrinking due to advances in transportation and telecommunications technology; material culture is starting to look similar the world over; and national economies are merging into an interdependent global economic system. The process by which this is occurring is commonly referred to as globalization. Correspondent: Globalization has been one of the most important factors to affect business over the last twenty years. How is it different from what existed before? Companies used to export to other parts of the world from a base in their home country. Many of the connections between exporting and importing countries had a historical basis. Today, to be competitive, companies are looking for bigger markets and want to export to every country. They want to move into the global market. To do this many companies have set up local bases in different countries. Two chief executives will talk about how their companies dealt with going global. Percy Barnevik, one of the world’s most admired business leaders when he was Chairman of the international engineering group ABB and Dick Brown of telecommunications provider Cable & Wireless. Cable & Wireless already operates in many countries and is well-placed to take advantage of the increasingly global market for telecommunications. For Dick Brown globalization involves the economies of countries being connected to each other and companies doing business in many countries and therefore having multinational accounts. Dick Brown:...
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