Doing Business in the EU and International Trade Fairs
Thomas Smith of eBSI Export Academy delivered a 3 day seminar on Doing Business in the EU, Networking and International Trade Fairs for JADE (Jordanian Action for the Development of Enterprises) and hosted by Amman Chamber of Industry on 5-7 October 2019. The Seminar was made possible thanks to funding from the European Union.
The objective of the seminar was to prepare the 45 SME Participants who hailed from a variety of industries including Plastics, Pharmaceuticals, Packaging, Food and Consulting, to understand better the process of doing business in the EU and to leverage both online and offline channels to generate leads.
The first day kicked off with an overview of a typical export transaction to the EU and also looked at the new Simplified Rules of Origin agreed between the EU and Jordan in December 2018. The current state of trade between Jordan and the EU was examined in detail and a framework for evaluating EU countries as potential markets was reviewed.
The day concluded with a session covering the importance of leveraging country image and how to manage intercultural issues when doing business in an international context.
The second day started off by looking at the EUR 1 and EUR-Med movement certificates and how they should be used. An understanding of the difference between bilateral trade and diagonal trade was explained using a simple case study and the rest of the day was focused on Business Networking.
Online business networking using LinkedIn was the first topic to be examined under Online Networking and looked at the importance of selecting the right keywords upon which to base your profile wording and then looked at best practice in profile creation. Tools which help enhance your profile and its credibility were also examined. Some techniques to identify scammers were shared with the group and then the importance of participating in targeted groups and using content publishing on LinkedIn wrapped up the LinkedIn Session.
The second online networking tool to be examined was the highly popular WebPortGlobal.com online platform which has become the defacto LinkedIn for Exporters around the world. Originally a system set up for the use of the World Trade Centers Association, WebPortGlobal's obvious benefit to SME Exporters because apparent early on and this powerful platform opened its doors to SME Exporters too. Over time WebPortGlobal.com has added a number of important services and information sources to its portfolio and some of these were shown to the participants and their benefits extolled.
A brief review of offline channels for business networking including Chambers of Commerce and the Global Chambers Network completed the Networking section of the Seminar.
Finally the day was wrapped up by a session looking at the new Incoterms 2020 rules and their impact on exporters pricing strategies. How Incoterms rules should be incorporated into the sales contract and elements of contractual due diligence were also discussed.
The final day of training started off with couple of export case studies and then moved onto covering International Trade Fairs.
The International Trade Fairs section of the seminar covered both participation as an exhibitor and as a visitor.
The process of identifying potential trade fairs and evaluating them before planning participation was covered. Negotiating pricing and elements to be included in the exhibitor's package was also discussed. The importance of having a documented trade fair plan as well as specific roles for those manning the stand was highlighted to the participants. The SME participants were invited to share their experiences in trade fairs and numerous roll playing scenarios were undertaken to highlight key learning points of the section.
The use of a Booth log was also explained and techniques for undertaking pre, during and post trade fair marketing activities also was explained.
To wrap up the seminar the participants were explained about the current Brexit situation and its impact on EU supply chains.
Feedback from the seminar was excellent and participants found the content of great benefit to their day to day businesses.