Friday, April 25, 2008

In the land of Rio and the Amazania

Session on Business & marketing in Brazil by Mr.Ravichandran, Secretary-General, Indo-Latin American Chamber of Commerce and Honorary Consul for the Dominican Republic

(As a part of the BRIC & N11 Series Sessions in the International Marketing Course)

There are very few people who have the knack of zapping you with the way they converse. This can be in terms of the content they speak or the way they deliver the content or merely the rate at which they go about doing this. The session with Mr. Ravichandran, was a melting pot of all the three attributes of speech that I have mentioned above. As a part of the International marketing course, we have been fortunate enough to interact with people representing the MBRIC countries. This was a session in that direction, where Mr. Ravichandran (Secretary-General, Indo-Latin American Chamber of Commerce and Honorary Consul for the Dominican Republic ) gave us a brief insight into the world of business and trade practised in the Latin American region of the world.

Latin America has always been a dream destination for every travel enthusiast. The beaches of Brazil, beautiful islands of the Caribbean and the sight of mindboggling castles in Mexico can bring alive the thirst glands in every travel maniac. But there is much more to these places apart from their attractive scenic locales. The way countries like Brazil and Argentina have moved up the economic ladder, having started liberalization almost around the same time as India, had enough to write home about.

The economic development of any country depends on the policies of the government put in place in those countries. The government intervention or rather non intervention when it comes to deciding on a few policies pertaining to the direct improvement of the economy of these countries has been really fruitful. It was unimaginable to hear inflation scaling up to 5 digits when the liberalization bug had bitten these countries. After that period, the measures taken by them to control inflation and thereby bring it down to what it is today have been really commendable.

The impact of information technology as an industry and the services provided by this industry has been pretty late when we compare our country with them. But this has also had its positive impact in terms of concentration on other manufacturing industries has been on a high here. The export import business has seen an upward rise delivering all the necessary inputs for the efficient growth of the economy. The purchasing power and the per capita income of the residents of these countries have improved to a great scale. Their import and export revenue on comparison with our country is extremely high; the numbers are breathtakingly tremendous in terms of its contribution to their national economy. Today they have come a long way from being the deprived, exploited nations which were a easy prey to the super powers of the world to being a country which is helping the world’s central bank to survive the credit debacle.Now that’s called coming a full circleJ..

It was awe inspiring to hear when Mr.Ravichandran spoke about the knowledge of the people in Brazil about Mahatma Gandhi and his non violence principle. They in fact believed in his preaching so much that they propagate “Gandhigiri” in their own backyard. Salaam Baapu.!!

Currently they are trying to match in every step taken by any other developing nation when it comes to taking their country on the global platform and letting the world know about the power of Latin America.The welcoming of companies from across the world to set up their factories in their soil and thereby develop their economy are signs of a mature economy. It was very surprising to learn that a group of latin-americans are sweating out in Vellore, and Vaniyambadi to learn the trade of leather tanning. Also Equally interesting cases were the ones about the success of our own Coimbatore bred Elgi tyre re-treading company and CRI pumps in this part of the world. The generic market has paved way for success to our pharma companies too. It was really an amazing afternoon full of interesting information & insights.

At times we get so carried away by looking at the development and the kind of noise made by the economic super powers that the smaller players tend to be overlooked. But the fact remains that every super power today was once a small player. Mr.Ravichandran , the Latin American enthusiast that he is, ended giving a note of caution to every developing country in the world, to look out for the sleeping giants. They are on the rise!!! Its upto us to convert this in to business opportunity. Yes there is much more for us in Brazil than samba, soccer and the carnivals.

Posted by Pradeep,Marcom Varsity ,CBS

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