With developments changing on a daily basis, it is difficult to provide any sort of authoritative statement on the ongoing financial and economic crises sweeping the globe, or on the response of governments. But I would like to express our concern for the challenges facing all our members, as well as our determination to continue to serve your needs effectively in times of tighter resources.
As they wrestle with difficult decisions and a rapidly changing environment, global policy makers must be careful not to lapse into the failed approaches of the past. Overly heavy-handed regulation, especially through the imposition of protectionist policies that stifle trade and investment, has been tried many times in response to economic crises, and it has always failed. Indeed, it has usually made matters worse, most notably during the Great Depression. Governments need to be nimble, using smarter regulation (and, wherever possible, self-regulation) to spur recovery, employment, innovation and renewed economic growth. And they must coordinate their activities via existing international institutions.
I would like to reassure all USCIB members that, given the current challenges we all face, USCIB has continued its prudent financial management and developed contingency plans should conditions further deteriorate. As companies’ travel budgets tighten, we expect that our members will rely on USCIB more than ever to represent their interests at critical international negotiations – talks that most likely will be more contentious than ever.
Uncertain economic times, coupled with the onset of a new U.S. administration, will make USCIB and the values we espouse more needed than ever. The defense and promotion of market-based, open trade and investment regimes and well considered, appropriate regulation will be important elements of USCIB’s communication with the new administration and others throughout the difficult days ahead.
Peter M. Robinson
President and CEO, USCIB
Write to Mr. Robinson at email@example.com