Strategic Uncertainty of US Export Strategy

By Zachary Alexander on

Yesterday, residents of Georgia found out that President Barack Obama wasn’t asking Congress for all of the money needed to fund the Savannah port project. And most deepening proponents were hugely disappointed. For those tasked with supporting sustainability, you have to consider whether shipping services and export in general will continue to be the economic drivers they once were.

The state’s two seaports, at Savannah and Brunswick, pump an estimated $39 billion annually into the state’s economy… Roughly 100,000 jobs across the metro Atlanta region depend upon goods flowing in and out of the ports. [1]

Post-Globalization, you may want to consider identifying new strategic options that limit export opportunities to the exchange of intellectual property. The reason for this is the emergence of desktop manufacturing. As long as there are domestic maker spaces, there is no need for tangible exports. Companies of any size can send the proper computer file and have the goods fabricated locally.

This does not remove the need for some export of raw materials. However, it does open up the opportunity for more commodity substitution and recycling. Where there is a viable domestic commodity or supply of recycled material, exports of finished goods will suffer. The international practice of exporting work in progress will most likely increase, driven by kit sales or do-it-yourself projects.

Zachary Alexander

[1] Chapman, D. Savannah port project gets small boost in Obama budget The Atlanta Journal-Constitution