Suominen spoke on a panel "Trade and globalisation: What’s working and what needs to change as trade,
finance, technology and people converge?" featuring Ken Ash, Director of Trade and Agriculture, OECD; Robert Koopman, Chief Economist and Director of Economic Research and Statistics Division, World Trade Organisation (WTO); Michael Gidney, Chief Executive, The Fairtrade Foundation, and Douglas Lippoldt, Senior Trade Economist, Global Research, HSBC Holdings. Alexander Malaket of OPUS Advisory Services International moderated.
Suominen discussed ideas around:
- Helping export credit agencies work with a broader set of players than banks (such as alternative finance platforms) to help export-driven SMEs secure credit
- Why venture capital and private equity funds should view export-driven companies as an outperforming asset class
- The critical importance of new sources of growth capital for companies' global competitiveness now that many companies are "born global" and unbankable during their first inroads into international markets
- Importance of public-private partnerships to undo bottlenecks to ecommerce, illustrated by the multi-stakeholder initiative Aid for eTrade to accelerate ecommerce in developing world she ideated and is building with the United Nations and leading corporations; and
- Measures to facilitate trade in low-cost items, such as through a plurilateral agreement on de minimis.
Suominen also had the opportunity to moderate a roundtable discussion among banks, SMEs, and trade finance experts on ways that banks could better service SME clients amid the growing capital requirements and tight KYC/AML requirements.