Implementation Issues Related to Globalization

When pursuing globalization, the management of global companies can benefit from the international business experience gained by other companies. This section addresses emerging issues and the ways some global companies conduct global business.

Global companies face two emerging issues. The first is fairness. Traditionally, in the market economy, major multinational profit-seeking companies have pursued globalization. Home-country governments of these companies tend to set the macroeconomic policy and rules of the game, and they do not always have the interests of emerging economy countries in mind. Calls have been issued by some emerging economy countries to seek global governance, with the participation of all emerging economy countries in order to ensure fairness to all involved.

The second issue is conflicts of interest. In industrialized countries, workers in certain "old-economy" sectors (e.g., mining, textiles, agricultural, and other manufacturing enterprises) face unemployment when jobs are transferred to emerging economy countries that offer lower labor rates. Workers in the "knowledge economy" sectors—electronics, computers, and high-tech export businesses—are gaining. Surveys indicate that people with low incomes are generally opposed to globalization, while those with high incomes favor it.

Protests staged against the WTO by the joint forces of labor (stumping for work rules to protect U.S. jobs), environmental (promoting the reduction of pollution), and human rights groups (protesting for the elimination of political and religious suppression) at various international places in recent years have indicated clearly that not everyone is in favor of globalization.

Even inside emerging economy countries (e.g., China), globalization is not welcome by all. Increased privatization, foreign investment, market opening (telecommunications, banking, financial services, and others), and increased foreign trade can facilitate the destruction of countless existing state enterprises and thus cause massive unemployment in the state sector. Hence, globalization brings gains to some sectors and losses to others, as discussed previously. Global companies need to devise long-range programs to address these issues in order to sustain the benefits they realize from globalization.

Companies engaged in international business may be classified into one of the four groups listed next, according to their corporate behavior in conducting global business.

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