This fall has been a blur of activities. We began our programming with a Harvard Business Review Press workshop on leadership, followed by a seminar on cloud services, and inspirational programs on empowering women and girls to pursue STEM fields. We also engaged our stakeholders on topics ranging from the workforce of the future, and digital transformation, to holding policy-shaping roundtables on cyber security, cloud services, and intellectual property protection.
We also continue to engage stakeholders in an ongoing conversation about concerns with cloud services that are challenging the ability of the public sector to capitalize fully on the opportunities afforded by digitalization.
What is more, we are looking forward to welcoming Ambassador-designate Kenneth A. Howery to Sweden. We stand ready to help him in pursuing expanded economic and trade relationships, and promoting science, technology and entrepreneurship opportunities -- priorities that dovetail with AmCham’s.
Trade is in the news -- a lot. The trade numbers in the first half of 2019 were promising with exports of goods from Sweden to the U.S. increasing sharply, up 28% (Source). However, we are closely following other developments that may adversely impact Swedish-American Trade and investment such as last week’s World Trade Organization (WTO) decision on the level of countermeasures the U.S. may request with respect to the European Union in relation to the Airbus dispute. Disturbingly, European officials are reportedly considering retaliatory measures against any new U.S. tariffs imposed pursuant to this WTO decision.
While there is a global need for free and fair, rules-based trade, imposing tariffs to achieve this is the wrong approach. The transatlantic economy is the world’s largest market and supports 16 million jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. Accordingly, AmCham is always on the side of free and fair trade and therefore skeptical of the tariffs approach. Simply put, tariffs are a tax on consumers and businesses and the wrong approach to address unfair trade practices.
In the coming weeks and months as we monitor these developments, we will be hosting a number of sessions to connect members, share knowledge and broaden our ongoing dialogues with policymakers, including:
November 15: HBR: Live in Stockholm: Innovation Capital
December 15: Save-the-Date: AmCham Annual Christmas Mingle
Also, our Mentoring Program - the only English-speaking program of its kind in Sweden - is accepting applications for the 2019-2020 program. If you have high-performers you want to help reach the next level, please click here (https://www.amcham.se/mentoring-program) to learn more and apply.
We look forward to helping you and your colleagues make connections, share knowledge, and shape policy in the months ahead. Please let us know which issues are most important to you and your business by completing our Annual Member Survey. It only takes a few minutes to complete, and we value your opinion. If you are not a member, click here to learn how you can join our dynamic network.
All the best,
AmCham Sweden Managing Director