corporate diplomacy

January 19, 2011

Research In Motion, the Canadian company that makes the BlackBerry smartphone, found itself in a number of high-profile spats with Asian governments in the past year... But RIM has no stranger or more persistent foe than Indonesian Communications Minister Tifatul Sembiring.

The prestigious and competitive ACE is designed to recognize the important role that U.S. businesses play in advancing good corporate governance and democratic principles worldwide. The award honors exemplary business practices, corporate responsibility and innovation in a company’s overseas operations.

These new investments are a significant vote of confidence in the continent’s future. Looking beyond Africa’s image as a poverty-stricken, war-torn continent, Walmart and Coca-Cola are making substantial investments to capture the business of Africa’s rapidly growing middle class.

Tommy Hilfiger has become one of the best selling international brands in India thanks to a little unexpected help from actor Shah Rukh Khan, says Mohan Murjani, who built the brand in the U.S. and brought it to India six years ago.

If there ever were a time for a new beginning in this country, it is now. The recession is still very much with us. Global crises and disasters compound daily. Our national attention is consumed with political candidates on both sides of the aisle who seem to have completely lost their minds. And yet amidst the absurdities, there are signs of real hope and cause for optimism.

In the United States, the pressure on Facebook, relatively mild so far, comes mostly from journalists and advocacy groups like the Electronic Privacy Information Center. But the time is coming when Facebook will begin to face ever more intense international pressure from foreign governments unpleased, for one reason or another, with how the site operates.

The Adolescent Girls Initiative partners the World Bank, the Nike Foundation and governments of developing and developed nations to empower girls in poor countries. The two-year-old program is helping girls in Asia, Africa and the Middle East gain the education and skills they need to transition into the workforce.

The timing for Walmart's first buyer-seller summit in India earlier this month couldn't have been better. As Indian firms keen to tap the retailing giant's global network prepared their pitches, the Indian government gave the first concrete sign that it may be ready to open up its potentially huge retail market to foreign investors — an opportunity that America's largest retailer has been chasing for as many as 20 years.

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