Really Useful Sites For International Trade Professionals

Monday, January 7, 2002
Issue 24

Happy New Year to all our readers! May this year be a happy and prosperous one for you!

Here's your latest issue of Really Useful Sites for the International Trade Professional. This free bi-weekly newsletter reviews useful Web sites from the Web Resources database at FITA's International Trade/ Import-Export Portal at, an excellent source for trade leads, news, events, and a link library of 7,000+ sites related to international trade.

Please feel free to pass this newsletter on to others.

My name is John McDonnell, and for years I wrote a weekly e- newsletter that profiled business-oriented Web sites. Now I'm using my Web research skills to find sites that are useful for international trade, as well as some fun sites that you'll enjoy visiting.


It's that time of year when I take down the old, tattered calendars around my house and office, and put up new, clean ones that will soon be covered in various colors of ink, with appointments and deadlines written in or crossed out, notes and scraps of paper taped or tacked to them, and other attempts to impose order on my days. There are some good tools for getting organized at at, which is a site that has resources to help you get control of your time. Here you can design your own calendars, as well as do more complicated things like create a teleconference across time zones, or keep tabs on your friends around the world by time zone.


When I went on a trip to Europe in high school (don't ask how long ago that was) I came back with a pocketful of bank notes and coins from the four countries I visited. I promptly took them to my local bank and converted them to dollars and cents. I guess they'd be collectors' items now, because on January 1st the Euro was officially introduced as the currency of exchange for the countries of the European Union, replacing the coins and bank notes of each country. If you want to get up to speed on the Euro, a good Web page to visit is Welcome to the Euro at, at the Web site of the European Union. This site will answer all your questions about the Euro, from a business and consumer standpoint.

A great business portal to Europe is Europages at, which has hundreds of resources for companies and individuals who want to do business in Europe. You can search by company name, by product or service, or browse the list of industries to find what you're looking for.

There are lots more links to Europe at the FITA site. Go to, click on Regional Resources and Multi-Lateral Trading Areas in the left column or "Search by Country or Region" in the right column, and then scroll down to Europe and select a country or area in the pop-up window . Or simply type "Europe" in the search box at

Are your prospects part of the international trade community? If so, here's an opportunity to showcase your service or product to 50,000 subscribers of Really Useful Sites for the International Trade Professional. FITA now offers limited sponsorship opportunities to selected organizations. For information, please contact Barney Lehrer, Director of eCommerce Development at or 1-800-969-FITA extension 4.


I've said before that the shotgun approach to searching doesn't work very well on the Web. If you use an all-purpose search engine you'll get overwhelmed with results, most of which will be useless. That's why I like Country and Regional Search Engines at It's got a list of search engines for every country, no matter how small (example: there are four for Bahrain), and the site's creator, Phil Bradley, says he'll keep the list updated regularly.

The FITA Buy/Sell Exchange

FITA and have launched a new International Buy/Sell exchange. The FITA Buy/Sell Exchange at is FITA's new business-to-business marketplace that helps your company find more business by delivering tender opportunities, RFQ's and qualified offers to buy and sell. You will have access to a global network of affiliated trade sites that work together to bring together businesses across borders. Take a look!


I like maps, and geography was one of my favorite subjects as a kid. Even if you can't stand geography, however, you're bound to find something useful at Jumpstation Geo at This site has a huge list of links to everything that's remotely related to geography on the Internet, and you'll find some fascinating stuff here. How about a search engine for sounds (earthquakes, storms, etc.)? Or a site where you can type in a U.S. ZIP code and find all the people in that area who contributed to political parties? Or a site with the Top Ten space science photos? You'll find all of these and more at Jumpstation Geo.

For archived issues of Really Useful Sites for the International Trade Professional, click here.

For a free list of links to useful sites in a wide variety of categories (both business and personal), visit my Web site, at

Published by Federation of International Trade Associations
Copyright 2002 The Federation of International Trade Associations. All rights reserved.
Are there topics you'd like to see covered in FITA'S Really Useful Sites? Send suggestions, ideas, or comments to editor John McDonnell at =================================================================
This newsletter is distributed by the Federation of International Trade Associations (FITA) for the benefit of the worldwide international trade community. If you have a question regarding this service, please contact FITA by email at