Really Useful Sites For International Trade Professionals

Monday, March 4, 2002 Issue 28   VOLUME 2 ISSUE 5  

Here's your latest issue of Really Useful Sites for International Trade Professionals. 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've been writing about useful Web sites for businesspeople, in various publications. Now I've focused on international trade, using my Web research skills to find sites that are useful for international businesspeople, and some sites that are just plain fun for anyone.


I've never been fond of statistics -- throw too many numbers at me and my eyes start to glaze over. However, even a statistics- impaired guy like me can see that OFFSTATS: Official Statistics on the WWW at is a treasure trove of information. OFFSTATS links to sites offering free and easily accessible social, economic and general data from official sources, especially those that provide both current data and time series. What this means is that you can click on the name of a country and get official government statistics, plus data from other sources (like the United Nations, the CIA, and the World Bank). As an example, Malaysia has 15 separate sources of statistics. This is valuable information for anyone who wants to get an accurate picture of an international market.


My youngest child has been sick all week with a runny nose and a cough. By visiting Common Cold at I found out that she has a Red Nose Rhinovirus, and that I should expect her to have it for 10-14 days. This site, created by two doctors, has a lot of solid information about the diagnosis and treatment of common colds, and it's helpful in dispelling myths, like "You'll catch a cold if you don't wear your winter coat!" (my mother's very words). According to Common Cold, a study was done that found people who were chilled were no more or less likely to catch a cold.

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.


Did you know that there are two televisions for every three people in the tiny country of Brunei, whereas Tajikistan, which is 28 times as large, has only one television for every eight people? I got this interesting statistic from AsiaSource at, a site that is packed with information about the countries of Asia. Besides the statistics section (which lets you make comparisons between different countries) AsiaSource has news, business resources (links to important business directories, government sites, etc.), a calendar of events, maps, a database of experts, articles & speeches, even a collection of recipes for Asian food!

There are lots more links to China 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 go to Asia in the pop-up window. Or simply type "Asia" in the search box at


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!


Here's a book I should have written myself. The International Business Information Directory at is all about how to find international business info on the Web. This Web site has a list of links from the book, and you probably don't need the book if you bookmark this page. The only thing I don't like is that it's pretty much just a list of links, with no description of what's at each site (I would have written a little review for each site, but then that's just me). There are lots of useful links, though, and you're bound to find something here that will help you.

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