Paid Post – The future of digital trade | Transformative Tech


Digital trade is commerce that is conducted
online, digitally through the transmission of data. Consumer spending patterns and behaviours
have been completely transformed by technology. If I think of me and my family for example,
we don’t go to the shops anymore. We buy all of our goods and services online
and if you multiply that up across the globe it’s several trillions that digital trade
now accounts for in the global economy. This is really the part of trade that is rapidly
growing, while trade in traditional goods and services; physical trade is actually plateauing. The research that we did in the Strategy&
team, looked at trade and services, and assessed whether distance mattered for that trade and
services. The research evidence suggested that distance
did indeed matter, that we traded most in the service sector with our closest geographical
neighbours. None of this happens without trust between
human beings. Yes, technology is an enabler, but trust is a clincher. Trust is clearly an important element of this
puzzle, but so is enabling the economy. So it’s balancing the degree of trust and integrity
of the data on the one hand, with the desire not to hinder the progress of the various
industries that are increasingly dependent on digital trade. In order to seize this prize, government and
business need to start working together better. At the moment, I think government wants to
work better with business and business wants to work better with government. The intention
is there, but actually they’re not quite sure how to do it, and we need new models
to make that happen. Governments are under constant pressure to
ensure that their countries are growing as fast as possible and creating jobs. And that their countries are fully engaging
in the potential of international trade. There needs to be this type of much deeper and wider
discussion between the business community and governmental authorities, to develop rules
that strike an appropriate balance. As a Strategy& partner, I’m hugely positive
about the opportunity that digital trade presents us with right now in the UK. The UK has so much to offer, particularly
in relation to service provision, and my hope is that everybody in the UK gets that, and
together we go into the global markets and we put the best of the UK forward.

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