Here's your latest issue of Really Useful Sites for International Trade Professionals. This free bi-weekly newsletter reviews useful Web sites from the Web Resources database at FITA's International Trade/ Import-Export Portal at http://www.fita.org, an excellent source for trade leads, news, events, and a link library of 7,000+ sites related to international trade. |
My name is John McDonnell, and for years I've been writing about useful Web sites for businesspeople, in various publications. Now I've focused on international trade, using my Web research skills to find sites that are useful for international businesspeople, and some sites that are just plain fun for anyone.
Here are the sites:
| OUR FEATURED COUNTRY SITE -- BELGIUM|
Although Belgium is small enough to fit inside West Virginia, and its entire population
is little more than half the population of New York City, this modest-sized country
is an economic powerhouse. It is one of the largest U.S. trading partners (it
ranked 14th in 2000), and has many opportunities for companies interested in trade.
A good place to start investigating Belgian trade is Made
in Belgium ( http://www.madeinbelgium.be ). Scroll down to the red buttons
at the bottom of the page and you'll be on your way. Click on "About Belgium",
and you'll get an overview of Belgian history, politics, and the current economic
climate. "Setting Up in Belgium" gives you step-by-step instructions on how to
set up a business. "Belgium on the Web" gives you links to government, economic,
research, and news sites about Belgium (I found http://www.research.be
very interesting). These are just a few of the resources at this site. It's the
place to go to learn about this small but important country!
There are many more links to Belgium at the FITA site. Go to FITA's
International Trade Web Resources ( http://fita.org/webindex/index.html
), click on Regional Resources and Multi-Lateral Trading Areas in the left column,
then scroll down to Europe and click on Belgium in the drop-down box. Or simply
type "Belgium" in the search box at http://www.fita.org.
My wife and I still have an old dog-eared copy of the Michelin Guide to Paris,
left over from the trip we took as youngsters 25 years ago. We've lent it out
to many friends who've gone to Paris over the years, and although some of the
information is dated, people still find most of it useful. Michelin is famous
for providing reliable information for travelers, and now they've created a Web
site, ViaMichelin (
http://www.viamichelin.com ), that's a must-visit for anyone traveling to Europe.
At this site you can get driving directions, weather reports, maps, traffic reports
(currently only for Great Britain), hotel and restaurant information, tourism
updates, and much more. A nifty feature: you type in your departure and destination
cities, and ViaMichelin will create a complete route map, with links to hotel,
restaurant, and tourist information for every step of the trip.
|FITA'S NEW GLOBAL PAYMENT SERVICES|
Do you wish you could receive exchange rates better than your bank?
FITA's new Global
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system. FITA's FX platform allows you to obtain real-time foreign exchange quotes
and then securely book both spot and forward currency deals. The system will
also allow you to conduct global payments online by managing your wire transfer
payments and bank drafts. The user-friendly platform will help you conduct international
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To ensure the highest quality service and your peace of mind this Global Payment
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exchanged over $10,000,000,000. It is having a partner of this caliber that
makes FITA's new online global payments platform so credible and secure.
The 3 main components of FITA's Global Payment Services are:
Why do companies use the Global Payment Services?
- To pay foreign suppliers' invoices and to quote customers in their foreign
- To manage wire transfer and bank draft payments
- For transferring money between accounts in different currencies
- For protecting their bottom line against fluctuations in exchange rates
- To save time and money
The Global Payment Services executes your trades instantly,
manages your global payments, protects you from currency
fluctuations and saves you time and money. Sign up for
free today and get the best exchange rates available.
To speak with an account representative or get more
information contact firstname.lastname@example.org
GUIDE TO POLITICS IN EAST CENTRAL EUROPE AND EURASIA
The former Communist countries of Europe and Asia have been modernizing at a rapid
rate for the last decade, and smart businesspeople try to keep up to date with
these changes. A good site for doing that is Erik Herron's Guide
to Politics in East Central Europe and Eurasia ( http://www.ku.edu/~herron/
). I wrote about this site several years ago, but it's worth a second look, because
it's been revised and updated. It's got political, cultural, and economic information
for dozens of countries, from Albania to Uzbekistan. You can click on a country
at the top of the page, or do a keyword search, and either way you'll get detailed
information. There are hundreds of links for each country, comprising government
sites, cultural organizations, economic development sites, news, statistics, and
much more. Erik Herron is a professor at the University of Kansas Center for Russian
and East European Studies, and he's done a fine job with this site.
GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS
Let's say you want to know what the record is for the longest ear hair (there
must be somebody who'd want to know that!). There's only one place you'd go to
find that kind of information -- the Guinness Book of World Records. For almost
50 years Guinness has answered questions about the longest, biggest, best, worst,
and just about every other category you can think of. Their Web site, Guinness
World Records ( http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com ) has much of the information
in an easy-to-use format. In categories like "Human Body", "Amazing Feats", and
"Sports & Games" you'll see records that run the gamut from the sublime to the
ridiculous. This is a fun site that will give you hours of enjoyment.