[GBP NOTE: This is a free report from the World Economic Forum posted April 2013. Highlights include extensive Internal and External DD questionnaires and a sample Red Flag Checklist.]
Good Practice Guidelines on Conducting Third-Party Due Diligence From the forward: Companies conducting business overseas face growing legal and reputational risks. These risks have become even more important because of increasingly complex business regulations worldwide, mounting pressure from regulators, enforcement agencies and civil society, and a dramatic increase in levels of business carried out in higher risk jurisdictions.
In the field of anti-corruption in particular, due diligence obligations on third parties have recently expanded in the wake of various laws such as the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and the UK Bribery Act. Under most of these laws, corporate criminal liability can be triggered when the bribe is paid by or through a third party. Companies are therefore incentivized to look into the details of transactions and their related third parties to identify and avoid the risk that third parties could bribe on their behalf.
In 2011, the World Economic Forum’s Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI) launched a working group charged with developing Good Practice Guidelines on Conducting Third Party Due Diligence. The guidelines are aimed at helping organizations mitigate the risk of becoming involved in corruption through third parties (e.g. agents, suppliers, joint venture partners).
China’s Impact on Manufacturing Exports of Other Developing Nations
This paper brings to light the waning strength of China’s labor-intensive export manufacturing and its impact on manufacturing activity in other developing economies. Rising wages and labor shortages are prompting factory owners in China to relocate facilities inland or in many cases flee to other developing countries where wages are lower or competitive and supply of unskilled and semi-skilled workers is abundant.
The results suggest that China’s waning strength in labor-intensive exports is benefiting some developing economies more than others, while a few appear to not be benefiting at all.
Stifel Nicolaus Transportation and Logistics Conference was held at The Ritz Carlton in Key Biscayne, Florida, on February 12-13, 2013.
The two-day event featured 30-minute company overviews, topical panel discussions and featured guest speakers with interaction and questions from the audience with over 60 leading public and private companies including the freight forwarding, logistics, trucking , railroad, parcel and intermodal industries.
Canadian National Railway Company YRC Worldwide Inc. Genesee & Wyoming Inc. Ryder System, Inc. Quality Distribution, Inc. XPO Logistics Inc. Echo Global Logistics Forward Air Corporation Con-way Inc. Saia Inc. CSX Corporation Werner Enterprises Canadian Pacific Railway, Ltd. Universal Truckload Services, Inc. Kansas City Southern Heartland Express Inc. of Iowa Landstar System, Inc. Student Transportation Inc. FedEx Corporation Norfolk Southern Corporation TravelCenters of America Swift Transportation The Greenbrier Companies GATX Corporation Radiant Logistics, Inc.
The following is one of the best primers on due diligence for exporters to China that I've seen in a long time. Although The Canadian Trade Commissioner Service says the purpose of the report is to "provide guidance to Canadian companies seeking to export products to China" it serves as good advice for exporters of all countries. It has done an excellent job of covering 5 major export issues:
1. Who Are Your Customers?
2. Exporting To China - What Are The Rules?
3. Checking Out Your Business Partner
4. Financing The Deal
5. Visiting Chinese Delegations - Words of Caution
Attend Myanmar Private Sector Investment Summit (MPSIS) to Find Out How You Can Get a Head Start in Myanmar!
Together with the official Local Host,UMFCCI, Myanmar Private Sector Investment Summit (MPSIS) will zoom into the private sector led industries and reveal their prospects and offer insights on how foreign investors can take part in these booming sectors:
- Trading Opportunities in Myanmar - Myanmar's Retail Growth - Development of Manufacturing in Myanmar - Opportunities for Plantation / Agriculture in Myanmar - Myanmar’s Tourism Growth and Opportunities in Hotel & Hospitality Sector - Myanmar’s Construction & Real Estate Markets - Outlook of the Forestry / Timber Products Sector in Myanmar - Prospects of Fisheries Sector in Myanmar - Developments in Transportation & Infrastructurein Myanmar
MPSIS gives you more than a conference agenda on investing in Myanmar. Find out about our specially designed "MYANMAR IMMERSION PROGRAM" which will help you to THINK LOCAL & ACT LOCAL.
Labor-intensive industries will be forced to move upscale or automate facilities to sustain operations.
With first-generation migrant laborers nearing retirement age, what propelled China to its status as the primary hub for low-cost production is now pushing the country out of this very position.
Labor-intensive industries such as toys, footwear, caps and textile products are expected to weaken in coming years as the current worker pool matures and labor shortages intensify.
Already, the latter has forced many factories in the southern and eastern provinces to close down in the past 12 months. Some plants have moved to second- or third-tier cities in the inland provinces of Jiangxi, Hubei and Hunan. Costs in these areas are about 20 percent lower than in Guangdong province.
Other companies have transferred overseas, including to Bangladesh and Vietnam, where production remains inexpensive. Labor rates in Bangladesh are just one-fifth of China's.
Relocation, however, is a temporary measure as the economies of these alternative hubs flourish and costs start to rise.
China's graying workforce
China's labor pool is older than those in other low-cost manufacturing centers despite the emergence of a new generation of workers, although even that poses a separate challenge.
According to Ben Simpfendorfer, managing director of Silk Road Associates, LLC, the average worker age in China is 35, whereas it is 21 in Laos. Indonesia and Vietnam laborers are the second-oldest at 28.
China itself is aging. In a report on the Elderly Protection Act, the National People's Congress said that as of November 2010, China had 178 million people more than 60 years old. The elderly demographic will exceed 200 million by 2013 and hit 300 million by 2025. Further, in just 30 years, roughly one-third of China's total population will be over 60.
The working-age population, meanwhile, is expected to peak at 1 billion in 2013 then begin shrinking. Over the next 10 years, the number of people in China between 20 and 24 will drop by more than 20 percent, said the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, eventually erasing the country's demographic dividend.
Some industry pundits argue that relaxing or lifting the one-child policy will simply alleviate the worker decline, but not stop it.
XBRL data standards have a wide variety of uses across various industries and can reduce the cost of surveillance, increase efficiency in data reporting and help organizations use this information to clearly analyze the impact of regulations.
By Greg Carter
I am addicted to Sunday morning news programs, and my wife and I spend most Sundays reading various papers and listening to the topics du jour. Regulation, and more important, the cost of regulation, is a frequent topic of discussion. On a recent Sunday, there was an especially interesting discussion centered on advances in process management and technology that could reduce the cost of regulation for businesses and governments. The problem being discussed involved the level of administrative bureaucracy instituted by both regulators and businesses. The cost for businesses and agencies to pull together compliance data and normalize it is significant. However, by using data standards rather than technology standards, these organizations could dramatically reduce costs while increasing efficiencies. Click here for full article in Baseline
[GBP Note: This is a good article illustrating some of the trade-offs governments face when creating an economic community or free trade association. The goal of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) is to "transform ASEAN into a region with free movement of goods, services, investment, skilled labour, and freer flow of capital." Governments generally hesitate to give up known tariff revenues for future tax revenues from increased economic activity, but it the best way to support long-term growth.]
Slashed tariffs under the Asean Economic Community (AEC) will cost Thailand Bt7 billion to Bt8 billion a year in lost revenue, but the Customs Department expects this to be compensated by soaring intra-Asean trade.
As import tariffs currently imposed on goods from Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar and other Asean members will be cut to zero in 2015 when the single market starts, it will take a toll on revenue, Somchai Poolsawasdi, director-general of the Customs Department, said yesterday.
However, the anticipated rise of intra-regional trade in Asean may bring greater benefits to the overall economy, he said.
Thailand's border trade was worth Bt899 billion last year, up 15.6 per cent from the year before, and the country enjoyed a trade surplus due to exports of Bt587 billion. But border trade is expected to soar under the AEC.
The department will also step up its scrutiny of whether investors in Asean meet local-content requirements, he said. If they do not, they cannot enjoy tax privileges under the Asean Free Trade Agreement.
The department plans to build a new customs office at Ban Phu Nam Ron in Kanchanaburi province, as two-way trade there is expected to take off when the Dawei deep-sea port and industrial park in Myanmar are constructed, he said. [GBP Note: See this article in the Irrawaddy Dawei in Doubt as Thai Port Talk Grows]
Several new customs checkpoints will be also built at the new border-crossing points, he said, while the old offices would be renovated and expanded.
Asean customs authorities have negotiated the streamlining of border checkpoints to save costs and move transport efficiently, Somchai said. If goods are examined by Thai customs officials when they reach the Laotian border, for example, there should be no need for a second check.
A national single window, which will allow exporters and importers to apply for customs clearance at one point electronically, is expected to be ready by the end of this year, he said.
More intra-Asean trade is expected to provide a cushion for the impact of the European crisis, he added.