In the current crisis, USCIB’s core values matter even more
By Peter M. Robinson
With the U.S. and global economies reeling from the effects of the worst financial crisis most of us have ever witnessed, we begin 2009 on a decidedly sober note. So why am I feeling optimistic?
Perhaps because I subscribe to the view that every market downturn is a buying opportunity. Or it could be that traditionally, in China, the Year of the Ox represents opportunity for those who are methodical, persistent and confident.
Whatever the reason, I remain optimistic that, despite the events of the past year, USCIB members, and our economy as a whole, will emerge from the current downturn more vibrant and competitive than ever. But what must we do to get to that point?
Barack Obama’s historic election to the presidency has raised enormous hopes, both in the U.S. and overseas, for change and reform in a variety of areas, including the economy. What will the new administration’s agenda, coupled with a strong Democratic majority in Congress, mean for global business?
Strong global institutions, and coordinated actions by governments, are essential as we address the fallout from the financial crisis and the downturn in the real economy. In the process, international regulatory agencies may acquire new responsibilities impacting business.
Our economic troubles resulted from both bad choices by policy makers and missteps in the private sector. Implementing meaningful regulatory reform, and getting us back on the path to growth, will therefore require leadership from both business and governments around the world.
All this points to the fact that an organization like USCIB has never been more important. Promoting economic growth and better living standards, at home and abroad, through strong engagement by global companies with governments and international rule-making institutions – this is the heart of our work. And it is work that must be done.
USCIB’s policy priorities during 2009 will be guided by our core values of international engagement and regulatory prudence in support of open markets, sustainable development, competitiveness and innovation, and corporate responsibility. Now more than ever, these values matter. And the voices of USCIB and its members will matter – in Washington, Brussels, Beijing, Paris, Geneva, wherever policy makers gather.
Over the coming year, I will use this space to reflect further on these core USCIB values – why they matter, and what we and our partners around the world are doing to ensure business can help build a better world, for ourselves and our children.
So as we begin a new year, I wish to offer thanks for the invaluable contributions of our members, as well as the hard work of our staff, our colleagues at affiliated business bodies around the world, and our partners in government and civil society. With your continued energy and support, we will all emerge from the current downturn stronger than we went in.
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