Wednesday, October 13, 2004 Issue 95 Volume 4 Number 21  

Hello International Traders!

Want to develop trade with Romania? I have a site in this issue that will get you off to a great start. Do you know which airlines have the friendliest cabin staff? I have a site to answer that question. Who's the world's biggest importer of potatoes? You'll find that answer at one of the sites I profile. Finally, do you know what Bush and Kerry have been saying about trade? The facts are at a site I have in this issue.

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


Romania is said to be the home of Count Dracula, and in recent years the country has developed a thriving tourist trade around the fictional vampire. But there's more of interest in Romania than Dracula. Romania is one of the most prosperous economies in Eastern Europe, with a growth rate of 6.6 percent in the first half of 2004, the highest in the region. The country is on track to join the European Union in 2007, which should make it even more attractive for trade.

If you want to find out more about trade with Romania, go to the Romania page at CEEBIC ( ). This U.S. Department of Commerce site has everything you need to get started doing business with Romania. There's a country profile, detailed market research (take a look at the food & beverage report!), trade and investment leads, a profile of the investment climate, information about financing, key contacts, U.S. embassy reports, business news, links to government agencies, and much more.

There are more useful links to Romania at the FITA site. Simply go to, then go to "Europe" and click on Romania. Or, you can type "Romania" in the search box at



I've never been very successful at sleeping on airplanes, mostly because I have to bend my body into the shape of a pretzel to get comfortable. Imagine my delight, then, when I found that a number of airlines now offer seats that allow you to lie flat. You can find out which airlines have these seats, and even read reviews of them, at Skytrax ( ). And that's not all. Skytrax also has the results of passenger surveys that determine the best cabin staff, airline of the year, and airport of the year. Skytrax also ranks world airlines according to a number of parameters (including onboard reading materials, staff language skills, ability to assist parents with children, etc.). Finally, there are message forums where travelers can express their opinions about any aspect of airline travel.



In a world of opportunities, the trick is finding the one just right for your business.

PIERS maintains the most comprehensive database of timely, accurate, import/export information on U.S. waterborne trade with the rest of the world. This is data collected from the ship's manifests and bills of lading filed with U.S. Customs & Border Protection and Commerce's Automated Export System.

PIERS not only provides more detail on ocean-going trade than any other source, they can help put together the global intelligence you need to find trading partners you can count on and customers ready to buy what you're selling.

PIERS invites you to learn more about their global intelligence resources. Go to .



If my children's eating habits are any indication, the future is sweet for the candy industry in the U.S. I'm not surprised, then, to learn that the the largest consumer of sweeteners in the world, and is one of the largest importers. I learned this from the Sugar and Sweeteners report at the Economic Research Service (ERS) Briefing Rooms ( ). The ERS is the main source of information and research from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and this page has detailed reports about agriculture and food products. There are reports on specific agricultural products like corn, fruit, potatoes, and tobacco which give facts and figures on U.S. and world production, plus imports and exports, and much more. There are also country reports on major food producers like Brazil and Canada, along with reports on topics like global climate change, food market structures, farm labor, and more. Click on "Key Topics" at the top of the page, and then scroll down to "Trade", to read more reports on world trade.


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In a few weeks the U.S. Presidential election will be held, and it looks like this will be a close one. People all over the world have opinions on this election, and if you want to learn more about the candidates and the issues, here are two useful sites.
  • If you want to find out the candidates' positions on international trade, read Bush and Kerry: Comparing Their Economic Platforms ( ), a speech given by Daniel T. Griswold at the Cato Policy Forum. It has a good analysis of Bush and Kerry's record and statements on trade.
  • Do you wonder if the candidates are using the correct facts in their speeches and advertising? ( ) will tell you exactly who's telling the truth, and who's fudging the statistics. This site is run by a nonpartisan, non-profit consumer advocate organization for voters. and it's like a breath of fresh air amid all the political rhetoric.

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