Bristol. - Multinationale Konzerne haben am Mittwoch einen neuen Dachverband mit Sitz in Bristol (England) gegründet. Der "Federation of International Employers (FedEE Global) " genannte Verband geht auf ein europäisches "Arbeitgeber"-Netzwerk zurück, dass 1988 mit finanzieller Unterstützung der Europäischen Kommission ins Leben gerufen wurde. Aus ihm ging die "Federation of European Employers (FedEE) hervor, die sich jetzt internationalisiert hat. Den Vorsitz von FedEE Global hat die Ford Motor Company (Europe, Africa and the Middle East) übernommen. epo.de dokumentiert nachfolgend die Presseerklärung der neuen Lobby-Gruppe, die einen guten Einblick in die Motivation und in die Geschichte der Globalisierung gibt.
"The international business community has today linked up into a single entity – The Federation of International Employers - to support their activities as major employers, explore new business methods and provide a central forum for discussing constraints and opportunities in the different jurisdictions where they operate.
At the launch of the Federation of International Employers this morning the Secretary-General, Robin Chater, spoke of strategic developments in the last two decades that opened up global markets and encouraged companies to invest in operations across national borders. He pointed out that
“It is something of a myth that globalization is simply being driven by the appetite of huge conglomerates to exploit low cost labour and dominate consumer markets. Firstly, gobalisation requires the cooperation of individual governments. What is more, workers often see foreign companies as better employers than domestic companies and consumer tastes will only change if international brands reflect their changing lifestyles”
The Federation was, in fact, born as a small club of multinationals over 25 years ago. Its growth and widening geographical brief has since followed the course of many individual enterprises. According to Robin Chater
“From the outset we have had to help companies deal with their successive growing pains. It is not easy expanding even into the relatively settled economies of western Europe and North America – but opening up operations in the rest of the world is a much harder task. Major companies have senior teams geared to business expansion – but it can be very lonely at the top of the corporate hierarchy, and in conditions of uncertainty there is generally no one “right answer””.
Asked why the Federation chose Bristol rather than London – and the UK over other countries – for its headquarters Chater said
“ Our former purely European-orientated organization was based in London. I guess the UK seemed logical because the UK is a genuinely multicultural society, is the birthplace of the English language and sits in a strategic position between continental Europe and North America. Bristol provides a more pleasant working environment than London, where the infrastructure is frequently stretched to the limit. Bristol also sits in a major transport hub with a busy international airport serving much of Europe.”
The Federation begins its existence with corporate members based in countries across all five continents and plans to achieve its most significant growth in Asia. This is why an Asia office has been established in Hong Kong and many of its services will, in future, be available in both English and Chinese.
When IBM was founded just over a hundred years ago it was one of only a handful of companies operated across national borders. Even by 1990 the number of genuine multinationals had grown to just 3,000 companies. It was not until the digital era, lower cost air travel, the multiplication of free trade agreements and the advent of containerization that the multinational era was born. Today there are around 70,000 multinational enterprises with almost a million subsidiaries around the world. They directly employ over 200 million workers and generate a quarter of the world’s wealth.
Although multinationals are typified as vast corporations the majority are relatively small - with under 300 employees. This is because the economies of scale that gives an advantage to some organisations can also hamper their flexibility and ability to innovate. Global trading opportunities have been opened up by Amazon, Alibaba and even Ebay as well as more speciailsed business to business services. The Internet has given companies the ability to control decentralized operations and the 2007-11 economic downturn released many internationally – orientated executives from large corporate jobs to set up new enterprises on their own.
The increasingly global nature of business operations is being driven by several powerful trends in labour economics:
- The structure of workforces are changing as new specialisms emerge and new markets open up.
- The workforces of developing countries are improving their education and skills at a more rapid rate than in developed countries. This is attracting companies to invest in more diversified R&D centres.
- Employees in developing economies continue to demand lower wage rates (although the gap with developed countries is narrowing)
- There is an increasing amount of migration between countries and regions through inter-company transfers.
- Companies naturally gravitate to less heavily regulated and unionised labour markets in order to take advantage of the greater management flexibility that this permits.
- Workforce attitudes and productivity levels differ between countries and cultures. There is particularly a strong contrast between the Far East and the rest of the world.
- The momentum leading to the creation of the Federation itself reflects the increasing globalization of business and the declining economic relevance of both continental divisions and national borders.
Note to Editors
The Federation of International Employers (FedEE Global) originated from an employers’ network first formed in 1988 with financial assistance from The European Commission. This initiative subsequently gave rise to the Federation of European Employers that was launched ten years later. The new organization launched today operates on a totally independent basis and is chaired by Ford Motor Company (Europe, Africa and the Middle East)."
FedEE Global website: www.fedee.com