The Wall Street Journal brought together CEOs of 100 major corporations to discuss their thoughts on recent economic challenges. During the meeting in Washington D.C., CEOs argued that the only way to increase jobs in the United States is to embrace increased global trading relationships. This plan would necessitate government and business leaders to work together and promote free-trade agreements that would open doors to international markets.
Although the recommendation may seem counter-intuitive, the CEOs actually recommended loosening immigration restrictions as a solution for unemployment. While bringing in more foreign workers may not appear favorable to United States citizens, many would argue that intelligent foreign workers migrating to the United States would improve the business environment as a whole. In the long run this could only be good news for the availability of jobs in the country.
Many American voters have a very negative association with the phrase “free-trade”, associating the idea only with the offshoring of business to foreign regions with low labor costs. Looking at the bigger picture of international business, CEOs argued that the only way for the United States to re-balance the world economy would be to reduce its budget and trade deficits. Without reducing restrictions on free-trade, there is no way for corporations to increase exports to foreign markets.
Despite disagreements between business and government, collaboration between the two groups is essential to the long-term growth and stability of the United States economy. Increasing private-sector jobs may be a short-term solution to some unemployment woes, but the only way to allow the overall economy to thrive is to embrace profit-driven organizations that have formed the economic strength of the United States in the past.
The world is moving toward a more global economy, and the United States will have no choice but to accept that it cannot exist without international partners. In order to reap the long-term benefits of trading in global markets, the United States must also make short-term sacrifices and outsource internationally when it is the logical business decision.