As emerging markets and developing countries continue to grow, it is critical that connections are made to these economic opportunities. At UPS, we understand that we have an opportunity and responsibility to provide these connections and meet customers’ needs.
Trade plays an important role in reducing poverty in many parts of the world. Small businesses, which represent the vast majority of businesses in most economies, gain access to new customers and markets, and generate higher standards of living for their owners and workers. Consider that among women-owned businesses, only one in five participates in international trade. More inclusive approaches will build new sources of trade and new trade supporters. It is a question of economics as much as equality: when the benefits of growth are shared more broadly, that growth is stronger and more resilient.
In this spirit, last year we launched the UPS Women Exporters Program, a global effort to help women business owners learn about exporting to enable them to gain access to worldwide markets. The UPS Foundation has partnered with the International Trade Centre’s SheTrades initiative, which helps to train and connect women entrepreneurs with buyers around the world. As one example, through SheTrades Argentina, UPS will work with Argentina’s Department of Economic Development to establish workshops to provide access to markets, knowledge, and technical proficiency to women entrepreneurs.
UPS has also announced a collaboration with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to promote women’s economic empowerment and improve their ability to import. Part of the White House’s Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP), the program will provide training and workforce development, promote entrepreneurship and create an enabling environment by identifying and addressing regulatory barriers that disproportionately hinder women exporters.
Closing the Gaps
With expertise in trade, small businesses, e-commerce, and exporting, UPS is uniquely positioned to help close gender gaps in resources, information, and networks. Given that our business moves 3 percent of global GDP each day, we have a unique and broad perspective of international trading patterns and of development opportunities in emerging markets. By taking a partnership approach and working with governments and nongovernmental organizations, we can share information while expanding the resources, scope, and diversity of training. By collaborating with different entities in many regions, we will provide entrepreneurs with the basic skills and knowledge needed to enter international markets.
Emerging market opportunities continue to expand our business. These markets are a destination for investment and an engine of growth for current customers, and will also be a focus for our next generation of customers. That’s why we’re making long-term investments where our customers choose to grow. During the past decade, we’ve established a strong presence in leading emerging markets such as China, Poland, Southeast Asia, and Turkey and expect that other markets in Africa, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East will become increasingly important for our business.
We approach emerging markets with long-term, tailored solutions to meet the unique needs of each country in an efficient, sustainable way. We typically partner with third parties that have established capabilities and expertise at the local level. These include authorized service contractors or third-party service agents, who are trained and managed to properly represent UPS.
We approach trade as an opportunity for our customers. When trade is easy, more trade happens — and that means more business for entrepreneurs and small- and medium-size enterprises (SMEs), as well as multinational corporations. UPS fields a team of policy experts to address trade barriers around the world, in collaboration with customers, business partners, and industry and region-specific trade associations.
Connecting people is not only how we grow our business; it is also how we support economic enhancement. Our strategy is to develop long-term, tailored solutions for each economy’s unique needs so they can be met in the most efficient and sustainable way. That’s where our bundled logistics solutions come into play. Providing contract logistics services with freight and package services on key trade lanes will accelerate the growth and prosperity of local businesses and give them access to new global markets.
We see a strong rationale for deepening transatlantic trade, including through trade facilitation and customs modernization measures, and for liberalizing trade in services, given that e-commerce services, electronic payment services, and delivery services are critical to the modern economy. By keeping the services sector open to competition, countries can give consumers greater choice at lower cost.