Global opportunities as local game changers

18 July 2012
ITC News
Participants at global services and outsourcing event in Nanjing learn about ITC’s work in boosting services industries in Bangladesh.

Opportunities and challenges for developing countries in trade in services were the focus in a recent presentation by Mr Anders Aeroe, Director of ITC’s Market Development Division, at the China International Service Outsourcing Cooperation Conference (CISOCC) in Nanjing, China, on 19 June.

Mr Aeroe highlighted the growing importance of the global sourcing market — a sector that in India for example, grew by 16% between 2005 and 2010 — but also the potentials and challenges faced by developing countries seeking to promote and boost the sector.

He drew attention to opportunities that are global, but also act as local game changers, such as the expanding use of mobile phones, improved broadband connectivity and social media and cloud computing.

Lack of reliable data

Mr Aeroe also pointed out the challenges to trade in services. One such element is the difficulty of obtaining reliable data. The lack of data is again worsened by the emergence of an online ‘grey economy’, particularly in developing and emerging countries.

He showed how ITC works to promote services in offshoring industries in partner countries. One such example is the Dutch-funded Netherlands Trust Fund II (NTF II), which in Bangladesh supports the country’s stakeholders in the IT and IT-enabled services (ITES) industry. Bangladesh has a cost-competitive and highly skilled pool of human resources provided through IT/ITES SMEs which offer flexible services. ITC is helping Bangladesh to leverage these competitive factors and expand its reach in the European market.

In its fifth year, CISOCC has established itself as a major platform for vendors and buyers in service outsourcing and more than 1,000 people participated at this year’s event. Participants included government officials, including a large contingent from the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, as well as many Fortune 500 enterprises, including IBM, Yahoo, Dell, Cisco, SAP, Germany, Deutsche Telekom, France Schneider, Cap Gemini and India INFOSYS.

Learn more about CISOCC.