International trade expert Aurelio Garcia talks about trade facilitation and how tackling red tape makes trade more inclusive. Garcia differentiates trade policy from “trade facilitation,” which involves improving the procedures required to move goods across borders. He describes how trade facilitation helps bring the benefits of trade to more businesses and entrepreneurs. Garcia explains that you cannot “solve 21st century problems with regulations from the 1950s and 60s” and discusses how data and IT systems are key to making trade systems more efficient and accessible. Garcia also talks about his first job working for a garlic exporter in Spain and how that experience still informs his work today.
Angela Ospina discusses her current work as a trade advisor at the Colombian Mission to the European Union where she focuses on international trade policies, particularly World Customs Organization regulations. Ospina talks about growing up in Bogota, her interest in travel and international relations, and how her experiences studying for her master’s degree in Japan influenced her approach to trade policy and its implementation.
Ospina discusses the significance of a peace agreement in Colombia and her optimism regarding the economic future of her country. She also talks about how seemingly technical trade issues play out in people’s daily lives. The hardest part of her job? Not the policymaking itself but ensuring that policies will work in practice.
The views expressed in this discussion are those of the guest Angela Ospina and do not represent those of the Government of Colombia.
CEO and Founder of Invest2Innovate (I2I)bKalsoom Lakhani talks about the trends, opportunities, and challenges that entrepreneurs face in Pakistan and the report that I2I just launched that looks at the environment for startups and investors in the country. Lakhani traces her work today back to her childhood in Bangladesh and Pakistan, and to her early interest in conflict resolution that stemmed from hearing about her family’s experiences during the Bangladesh War of 1971. The stories she heard as a child still resonate today as she seeks to increase understanding around the world about what everyday life is really like in countries such as Pakistan that are often best known in the West for violence and instability. Lakhani talks about how her interest in social justice led her to venture philanthropy and to the work she does today helping shape a supportive environment for entrepreneurs to start and grow businesses in Pakistan.
This week in CIPE’s podcast Democracy that Delivers, Manogya Sharma and Sarita Sapkota from Samriddhi, The Prosperity Foundation, discuss their organization’s work in Nepal providing policy solutions to economic challenges and generating public-private dialogue to forge a way forward on key issues facing the country.
Sharma and Sapkota talk about how their organization has grown over the last ten years from focusing on youth-based programs to wider issues, including the development of a Nepal Economic Growth Agenda. They also discuss the importance of coalition-building and how to make sure your message reaches the government even when there is a turbulent political atmosphere. They also talk about the investment climate in Nepal and the environment for entrepreneurs starting and growing businesses.
CIPE Board member Claude Fontheim talks about how the rule of law, transparency and good governance underpin strong, inclusive development. Fontheim explains that investment alone is not enough and that support for public institutions is needed to ensure that the benefits of trade and economic growth reach all segments of society. He also discusses the direct link between development around the world and U.S. national security interests.
Fontheim also talks about how U.S. companies contribute to the good governance of countries they invest in, and how they partner with NGOs and civil society to support initiatives in sectors such as health, education, and women’s rights.
Fontheim discusses his early work with the Democratic Leadership Council and how he was inspired by Bill Clinton’s vision of “globalization with a human face.” He also shares how his family’s experience during the Holocaust shaped his world view and generated his interest in the forces that knit societies together and create peace.