IN THIS ISSUE:

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Hello, John McDonnell here, with your latest issue of Really Useful Sites for International Trade Professionals. Look north, young trader, if you want to succeed -- specifically, to Finland, a country I profile in this issue. I also have a U.S. government site that has lots of information and contacts for you to help with the rebuilding of Afghanistan. If you're interested in Asian business, I have a site that combines the resources of three universities on this subject. Finally, I've got a link to a Harvard Business School page with lots of useful articles about business research on the Web.

If you'd like more information about international trade, go to FITA's International Trade/ Import-Export Portal ( http://fita.org ), an excellent source for trade leads, news, events, and a link library of 7,000 sites related to international trade.

FINLAND -- OUR FEATURED COUNTRY

http://virtual.finland.fi

Finland is a country with thousands of lakes, a booming high-tech industry (more cell phones per capita than anywhere in the world), and long summer days because of its proximity to the Arctic Circle. In 2000 it was ranked 13th in the world for ratio of exports to GDP, and 19th for imports, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. It's a country worth investigating if you want to develop your trade links, and here's a good site to start your research.

Virtual Finland ( http://virtual.finland.fi ) is an attractive, well-organized site that will get you up to speed on Finland and its economy. Click on the categories in the left column, and you'll find links to Finnish news, economic data, trade contacts, travel information, history, events calendars, weather reports, government agencies, and much more.

There are many more links to Finland at the FITA site. Go to FITA's International Trade Web Resources at http://fita.org/webindex/index.html, click on Regional Resources and Multi-Lateral Trading Areas in the left column, then scroll down to Europe and click on Finland in the drop-down box. Or simply type "Finland" in the search box at http://www.fita.org. There are some great books on trade with Europe in the FITA Global Trade Bookstore, including Exporting to Scandinavia, the DandB Export Guide: Finland.

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REBUILDING AFGHANISTAN

http://www.export.gov/afghanistan

There are new developments in Afghanistan on a daily basis, as the country struggles to rebuild itself. Trade will play a vital role in this process, and that's why the the U.S. Government's Rebuilding Afghanistan ( http://www.export.gov/afghanistan/) site is so important. Here you'll find links to news and information that will help you establish ties with Afghanistan. As an example, you'll find links to commercial opportunities, internships, humanitarian assistance, the latest headlines, financing, investments, and more. This is an exciting time for Afghanistan, as the country seeks foreign investment and business ties, and Rebuilding Afghanistan will keep you abreast of all the developments.

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THE EUROPEAN BUSINESS DIRECTORY

500,000 companies in 33 countries http://www.europages.com

EUROPAGES is a business directory listing 500,000 companies selected for their import-export dynamism in all business sectors in over 35 European countries. EUROPAGES is an ideal tool for finding new clients, suppliers and partners: it is a popular reference guide with European purchasing directors. Europages.com, your connection to the business world!

One single ad in EUROPAGES generates an average of 102 business contacts in one year. People like Peter from Denmark say, "EUROPAGES is our best investment for export." Click here to learn about how your company can be featured in EUROPAGES.

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PORTAL TO ASIAN INTERNET RESOURCES

http://webcat.library.wisc.edu:3200/PAIR/index.html

In my career as a writer, I've always found university libraries to be the best sources of information, so it's no surprise to me when I find a university library Web site that is a treasure trove of reliable data. The Portal to Asian Internet Resources (PAIR) ( http://webcat.library.wisc.edu:3200/PAIR/index.html ) has more than six thousand professionally selected, cataloged and annotated online resources about Asia. This portal has been put together by area studies scholars, bibliographers and subject experts based at the libraries of the University of Wisconsin, the University of Minnesota and Ohio State University, and it's got first-rate information. My only recommendation would be to click on "Tutorials" and "About the Catalog" so that you can learn the best way for searching this vast resource.

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HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL RESEARCH NOTEBOOK

http://www.hbsworkingknowledge.hbs.edu/topics/notebook

I never went to Harvard Business School, but I use their Web site like a pro. Right now there's an article that's a must-read for anyone doing international business research. Go to Harvard Business School Research Notebook ( http://www.hbsworkingknowledge.hbs.edu/topics/notebook/ ) and click on Data Web: The Bottom Line for Trade Data ( http://www.hbsworkingknowledge.hbs.edu/item.jhtml?id=3699&t=notebook ). You'll come to an article that explains how to use the U.S. International Trade Commission's database to do market research by country or product. There are lots of other content- rich articles about business research at the HBS Research Notebook site, which is what you'd expect from a Harvard site. And FITA is proud to say that the FITA Web site itself is featured on this Web site in the "Globalization" section. Click here to take a look.

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"This is copied from the newsletter Really Useful Sites for International Trade Professionals, a free, bi-weekly email publication of FITA - The Federation of International Trade Associations. Please feel free to subscribe to this newsletter at http://fita.org/useful."

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