Chinese Consumption Creating Jobs in America? This is the Power of Access.
This week, the cover story in The Economist is titled, “The Rising Power of China’s Workers.” It explains how the strong pressure for higher wages will shrink China’s trade surplus and boost its spending. “A 20% rise in Chinese consumption might lead to an extra $25 billion of American exports. That could create over 200,000 American jobs,” says the magazine’s leader.
Not very long ago, the concept that Chinese workers could create American jobs was almost inconceivable. That’s because the Chinese economy was walled off from countries with open economies. Just three decades ago, in fact, almost half the world’s population lived in nations with restricted economies.
Today, political changes, reinforced by Internet technologies and fast, reliable shipping, have transformed trade around the world. We at FedEx call that phenomenon “Access,” the creation of a world where people can make, sell, buy and consume products between almost any pair of points on the globe, turning individual entrepreneurs into global merchants and raising the quality of life for those who participate in it.
Through the FedEx networks that touch 220 nations and territories, we see the power of Access every day. Small businesspeople in the American heartland expanding their markets with sales to other countries. Young people in many countries getting the latest electronic products shipped by air direct from far-away factories. Craftswomen in Africa selling jewelry and baskets via the Internet, making the world their village square.
FedEx is proud to have played a central role in expanding Access and the opportunity it brings to people, businesses and nations around the world. For the last five years, we’ve pioneered the study of Access, learning more about how it changes what’s possible for billions of people, turning ideas into reality, bringing dreams within reach.
The recent global economic downturn has caused some people to think twice about open markets and increased Access. That’s why we’ve made the future of Access and trade the subject of the newest issue of the FedEx business magazine, Access Now.
In the magazine, leading thinkers contribute compelling stories about critical choices the world faces in three areas: trade policy, energy and infrastructure. As Jared Diamond, the UCLA evolutionary biologist, geographer and author of Collapse, says in Access Now’s cover story, “Either we are going to resolve these problems in pleasant ways of our choice, or else the problems are going to resolve themselves in unpleasant ways not of our choice.”
The rapid rise in Access over the last three decades has helped hundreds of millions of people around the world move out of poverty into an emerging, global middle class. Some of these people are participating in the creation of new technologies, ideas and policies that can address the challenges facing the world. You can read their stories at access.fedex.com, or if you’d like a printed copy of the magazine, you can subscribe here with the compliments of FedEx.
We hope to keep stimulating discussion, from all points of view, around this vitally important topic for the world’s economic future.