Deconcentrating export opportunities and benefits

In a world of concentrating economies, opportunities in global markets are seized by large corporations. Smaller companies fail to do so or access niche markets where large companies do not obtain sufficient profitability. Corporate initiative is paramount, but it is part of economic systems that compete for market share. This is where the role of the State acquires strategic importance. In non-central countries, this action of the State as a promoter of the export effort can also serve to deconcentrate opportunities and benefits.

To participate in globalized markets, it is essential to develop competitiveness without closing in on static advantages that fail to access new opportunities. This implies facing challenges on several fronts, some technological and managerial and others of a systemic nature associated with geopolitical struggles and openings.

Resistance in non-central countries to the aggressive penetration of corporations that quickly lead oligopolistic markets is not easy, much less to go out in this context to compete internationally. On both fronts, the role of the State is decisive, which leads to the identification of those who control it, a political issue par excellence.

In other articles, we analyze how large oligopolistic corporations condition the actions of the State within countries by co-opting and financing sectors of politics, the media, the judiciary and major private universities.  Along these lines, we focus on the margins for action on the external front.

A circumstance to overcome is the fragility and small scale of the vast majority of national enterprises. Few have their own resources of the scale required and have little knowledge, information, and contacts of external markets. Their management skills do not always correspond to modern business engineering and they hardly receive modest public support to explore opportunities outside the country. All essential factors to access international markets.

It will be necessary to face new modalities of organization and management that will make it possible to solve problems of scale, productivity, and even equity in terms of the distribution of results.

Boosting small and medium-sized export capacity

The large economic conglomerates know how to distribute the various phases of their production processes territorially, including regulatory facilities that they extract from the States. Hence, for non-central countries, the main challenge is not to concentrate on large exporters, but to enhance the export capacity of small and medium-sized enterprises.

The promotional axis involves developing the necessary productive capacity to solve the challenges of producing for regional or more distant markets, including quality and volume of production, delivery times, presentation, prices, commercial channels to impose a brand, ensure payments, and invest in advertising and follow-up.

These requirements make exporting a complex operation that requires knowledge, organization, management, contacts and financing. Hence, the participation of small and medium-sized producers in exports is limited despite valuable and pioneering efforts to establish export consortia and facilitate their presence at fairs and exhibitions.

There is a lack of instruments to help small and medium-sized producers form export networks or chains. That is, to establish large exporting companies in which to integrate. They can take the form of consortia, second-degree cooperatives, franchises or others. These new large exporting companies would need to be promoted in their initial stage with tax and credit facilities. They would establish a leadership team with experience and understanding of the diversity of participants, the main support of this type of export enterprise.

New exporters that associate small and medium-sized enterprises generate added value that would not otherwise exist. They would need to add excellence management together with Boards of Directors that ensure both economic success and the fair distribution of results.

In short, there are international opportunities that have not been exploited by the segment of small and medium-sized productive enterprises. Articulating dispersed production with export efforts is a valuable strategic innovation that does not arise without appropriate support. Something similar can be developed in the area of import substitution. These are two initiatives of critical importance in non-central countries which must resolve recurrent crises in the external sector and need, at the same time, to promote decentralized areas for growth. An achievement that integrates equity with productive power, very different from what is imposed by the hegemonic process of concentration of wealth and decision-making power.

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