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Investments Vs Immigration, a hobsons choice

By : Amit Bhushan Date:29th June 29, 2013

The Western powers are back in raising the protectionism game again. Various countries are looking to control immigration while at the same time seeking a level playing field for protecting investments by their corporate in developing world. They distinguish investments from immigration as investments bring forth job creation within the developing countries, which may not be wrong perceptually. However blocking immigration or limiting the same to highly skilled people denies the people equal rights to compete against their counterparts in developed countries. Conceptually in an open world every form of competition should be free whether from people in organized group in form of corporate or unorganized lot as individuals. While seeking a level playing field for only organized corporate and putting blockages for individuals, the developed world creates an unlevel playing field where it tries to retain jobs within their shores. By allowing immigration for highly skilled people from developing world, they are offering no favour to the developing world since this would mean allowing entry of those people who help them to compete better for opportunities in the developing world. This would support retention of a host of low value add jobs like clerical activities and other lifestyle support for highly skilled people within the developed world which would have migrated to places where this could be done in much more competitive rates. The developing world in their quest for growth and survival remains dependent on products and services from the developed world and keeps coughing up the price while remaining on a politically weak wicket. The developed world also accentuates the differences in the developing world so that they are not exploring the alternatives offered by their developing world brethrens and uses media as well as finance to support this quest to the hilt. Media in the developing world is fed with negative stories about product, services and concepts prevalent in other developing countries bringing out the negatives while ignoring positives and high cost developed world products, services and concepts are pushed on the back of credit support from developed world financial services providers. Very often, the credit evaluation criteria of the multilateral institutions are tuned to support concepts prevalent in developed world while ridiculing those in the developing world (also, often the concepts of developing world solutions are not backed by enough credible research which needs to worked upon by developing world organizations). Frequently, the developing world is also being pushed to reduce tariff and non-tariff barriers for developed world items in name supporting trade and job creation. Most politicians in the developing world are mired in corruption and controversies, some of which may be handiwork of the differences within political institutions of a country, some due differences with

competing countries and some created by the West. Frequently, the political leaders in the developing world fall prey to Machiavellian designs of the West taking short cut and sub-optimizing potential of the developing world rather than exercising choices that optimizes the potential of their own people. In the current economic condition developing world has an option to rise i.e. say if major developing powers such as the BRICS, especially China & India come closer to explore options and choices available for their people. An attempt to put up a bank has just fallen. The principle reason is that enough intellectual options backed by research are not being explored and there is enough mutual distrust. For any developing world enough to succeed, it is pertinent for the duo to put their power together. This would require intellectual proximity and this we need to build bridges. This could require China bringing in its money and intellectuals to support continuous interaction with intellectuals in India, probably by support a research university, which feeds in media in both countries. However, both nations seem to miles off from such pursuit as of now. The businessmen in the developing world with their nascent success stories salivate at the idea of access of the developed world markets where prices of most goods are much higher in comparative terms mirroring the costs locally as well as the costs of doing business due to elaborate procedures. They encourage their politicians to play along with the West since this would imply that their businesses will gain a toehold in the developed world markets gaining from cheap funds and some lucrative clientele. However, the visa regulations and elaborate procedures including technical, legal and commercial terms means that most developing world businesses are unable to grow beyond a certain limits. Few developing world businesses have become big by gaining ground in developed world markets and if Japanese and Korean experiences are any indicator then such success is becoming increasingly difficult to achieve and is taking much longer than ever. The Chinese local companies are growing however it is mostly because of rising consumption in the developing world coupled with the lower strata of the developed world rather than Class consumers of West who may be consuming made in china products but from a company which is Western owned with only facilities in China. Such companies can easily shift operations to other areas provided that they manage to get better taxonomy and infrastructures as well as freedom in managing operations elsewhere to drive down costs even lower which in effect means that developing world should slog for peanuts while fruits as well as taxes are paid to maintain lifestyle of the West.