In November 2019, we launched a solutions initiative, “Unlock inclusive trade,” at the Bloomberg New Economy Forum.

Its purpose was to identify barriers to diversity and innovation in regional and global trade; to increase resilience in the face of supply chain disruptions; and to develop standards, enable knowledge sharing, and leverage emerging technologies that enable SMEs’ participation in multinational corporations’ value chains.

A few short weeks later, the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 and its ongoing impact on supply chains, public health, economies, and livelihoods only increased the relevance and urgency for this work.

We continue to ask ourselves: How can companies survive the short-term shocks of this global pandemic? How will they build resilience for the aftermath? How can small businesses in developed and developing markets alike stay afloat, pivot, and innovate? How will regulatory bodies, multilateral organizations, trade associations, corporate leaders, entrepreneurs, and citizens themselves recognize what was broken in the system? How can we learn lessons to rebuild a more inclusive, more resilient system for the flow of goods and services across borders? How can technology create efficiency, increase sustainability, and alleviate unnecessary burdens as the world emerges from this crisis?

We invite you and your organization to join us and to support our esteemed collaborators at the Global Trade Professionals Alliance (GTPA) in exploring these questions through the work outlined in the following pages. Your perspective, insights, networks, data, and commitments to inclusion and innovation will be invaluable in shaping the research, results, and recommendations.

It is in this context that one of our first projects will be to deploy a global survey “Building Business Resilience in Global Value Chains 2020-21”, covering MNCs and SMEs participating in GVCs.

The work we do together is meant to explore and build on data, research, and perspectives from SMEs, MNCs, and trade professionals in order to achieve substantive and practical outcomes, from global standards we can widely adopt to changes in corporate procurement policies. Thank you most sincerely for your consideration and please reach out to us at any time.

We wish you, your loved ones, and your colleagues around the world safety and resilience in 2020 and beyond.

Kind regards

Carolina Aguilar, Solutions Director, Bloomberg New Economy

Lisa McAuley, CEO, Global Trade Professionals Alliance