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During the high-growth years between 1992 and 2007, the globalization of commerce galloped at a faster pace than in any other period in history. Now, amid the chronic unemployment and anti-trade rhetoric of the post-financial-crisis world, some observers wonder whether globalization needs a time-out. However, the experience of multinational companies in the field suggests the opposite. For them, globalization isn't happening rapidly enough. Whereas GDP growth has stalled in the industrialized world, consumption demand is still expanding in China, India, Russia, Brazil, and other emerging markets. The 1 billion customers of yesterday's global businesses have been joined by 4 billion more. These customers reside in a much larger geographic area; three-quarters of them are new to the consumer economy, and they need the infrastructure, products, and services that only global companies provide.
The problem is not globalization, but the way our current institutions are set up to respond to this new demand. The prevailing corporate operating model does not work well with the structural changes that have taken place in the global economy.
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