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Methods and means of export promotion : why the United States must follow Europe's example Lageson, John David


In the age of globalization, export competitiveness is a priority for policymakers in countries around the world. Key issues such as employment and economic growth are tied to a country's exports, and persistent trade deficits can have negative long-term repercussions. Despite its current status as the world's largest exporter of goods and services, the United States has run a considerable trade deficit for the past three decades—a deficit that soared to record heights in 2006. Meanwhile Germany, Europe's largest economy, remains the world's largest exporter of goods, and maintains a large trade surplus. As a whole, the EU has a small, but manageable, external trade deficit, and remains extremely competitive. While U.S. and European exporters are subject to different economic conditions, both must actively compete for sales in the global marketplace. The U.S., EU, and EU member states all have export promotion programs to assist their firms in this competition. While the United States makes a considerable effort to promote export activity, it falls short in comparison to Europe. Although a trade deficit does not stem solely from lackluster export promotion efforts, the United States must improve its export promotion programs as a means to address the deficit, at least in part. To this end, much can be learned from Europe.

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