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Paradise lost?

Dear Blogger,
This is a first for me, I mean actually blogging about my vacation, a holiday, a retreat away from home, an escape from routine. But let me come to the point: Paradise Lost is not a work of fiction, it’s a reality.
In Hawaii as well as Tahiti, one has to hunt for anything actually manufactured there. Hunt, meaning to shop around and ask: “Is this made here?”
The answer is quick and firm: “Yes of course.”
But that’s not true. The man lies. The tag says it (whatever that is) has been designed here…
When you confront the sales person, the response is also very quick and firm: “Oh… I didn’t know that. Duh.”
Souvenirs, knick-knack, gifts, art, jewellery and clothing… found in paradise are made elsewhere, in China, India, Indonesia, Vietnam…
So what are the two most important questions we should be asking ourselves about our business plan?
a. Are there any parts of the market place that are still protected from foreign competitors?
b. Can one protect his or her business from the competition, in a very, very, local market?

Here, for your enjoyment, is a definition of a protected market:

A protected market is defined as one defended from the competition. This concept dates back to the 18th century, where Adam Smith, a Scottish philosopher and a founder of political economics and the 19th century English economist Alfred Marshall, as well as many others, considered the repercussions of flawed competition, trade restrictions, etc… as a way to protect certain markets from the competition.

How old is protectionism? The answer is rather simple. Protectionism has its origins as far back in time as when commerce happened between tribes, villages, protecting trade routes and suppliers, city states, etc… As you may well know, market protection also comes in all sizes and shapes, and as recently as 2001, these protections were in play worldwide, in spite of commercial treaties and, they more or less had some level of success.

But today, some would have us believe that naturally protected markets still work. Regrettably, I beg to differ. A carefully crafted Tahitian wooden turtle, truly local, with the word Tahiti carved on the animal’s belly, is in fact, manufactured in Indonesia. And so, as incredible as it may seem, even very local markets, tiny ones, miniatures, small, insignificant, call them microscopic markets, are not protected any longer from the competition.

What we are seeing are predatory behaviors. They are the standard of commerce, being installed, worldwide, no holds barred.
Paradise is indeed lost, because it’s gone global!

Andre J Haddad

Posted in Country visits, Management ideas.

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2 Responses

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  1. Butterfly says

    Good point. I hadn’t touhght about it quite that way. 🙂

  2. Melisa says

    It’s great to find an expert who can exalpin things so well

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