How might Singapore companies combat rising economic nationalist tendencies when seeking to expand abroad? 

 

Here’s what Kunalan Chakravarthy, our Managing Director, thinks:

“As the global economy goes through an increasingly volatile phase, nations are looking to protect their local political and economic bases through various anti-competition moves cloaked in nationalistic mandates.

As Singapore companies (especially SMEs) expand, especially in the region, they need to relook their plans for international growth and plan for the potential challenges of protectionism. The key to success lies in the intellectual assets of the organisation – the people, the systems, the methodology, and ultimately the value they bring to their global customers.

As the Singapore economy matures, it is critical that companies recognise the need to think differently, to become nimble and value intellect, experience and services. No longer will competing on lower-cost (or even higher-end) manufacturing be a sure-win.

Being able to innovate, create, design and provide niche/critical services is going to deliver the winning template. Protectionism typically follows high volume, low innovation industries including steel, agriculture, and even wafer fab industries. Re-positioning ourselves in high-value, next-generation solutions will ensure that Singapore-made goods and services will be in demand.

Originally posted in The Business Times

http://www.businesstimes.com.sg/views-from-the-top/doing-business-in-a-geo-protectionist-environment