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china, mexico, philippines, us doc @ mbda seminar

Wednesday 17 March, 2010

I attended this seminar  MBDA International Day-Global Business Forum presented by the Minority Business Development Development Agency which featured speakers from China, Mexico, the Philippines, & US Department of Commerce.  Last year the MBDA took a delegation to China & they were awarded multiple contracts to MDE’s (Minority Development Enterprises).  Their focus is on Mexico this year.  Their aim is to provide access to global markets.  The MBDA’S model is to provide:

  • preparation-strategy, team-building, identify potential partners
  • orientation-travel logistics, meet prospects, identify barriers, reevaluate
  • implementation-identify personnel, serve partners, integrate the communication process.

The strategies they promote:

  • follow your customers abroad
  • leverage your ethnic heritage to the markets of your ancestors
  • leverage minority supplier status to foreign customers in the US

The MBDA is partnering with

  • US Dept of Commerce
  • Consuls General
  • Chambers of Commerce

Here are the presentations by each of the guest speakers:

Q&A

  • The US Dept of Commerce can provide lists of projects upon which American firms supposedly could have a fair chance.  ProMexico.gob.mx helps there, while the system is not yet very sophisticated in the Philippines.
  • Americans need to better understand the cultures of the countries with which they want to do business.  Localization & hiring locals is also key.
  • NAFTA protects intellectual property in Mexico, & IP must be protected locally in the Philippines.
  • American firms can save 40-70% (10-20% vs. India) on labor costs in the Philippines, while in China labor costs vary by city, & other considerations are more important than labor costs in Mexico, i.e. technology, distribution, etc.
  • Chinese companies need permission from their local chamber of commerce to come to the US, while American firms should simply introduce themselves to the trade commission to meet Philippine firms coming here.IT outsourcing grew in the Philippines as an outgrowth of call centers & progressed into doing data entry for MNC’s.
  • The Philippines offers hotel accommodations & airport service as incentives to exhibit @ trade shows there.

    Comments from a couple of participants:

    • These organizations can only do so much.
    • You don’t want to depend on just 1 party to pursue these kinds of opportunities.

    my $.02 worth & blatant self-promotional plug:  gata can provide more focus on these American export opportunities than these organizations.

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