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Globalisation 4.0

Globalisation 4.0
febrero 01
2019

The World Economic Forum (WEF) held in Davos, Switzerland from January 22 to 25, 2019, had at the center of many discussions the state and development of the world economy within the context of what they called the Globalisation 4.0 .

The Globalisation 4.0 – in the terms of the discussions- is strongly supported on the development of information technology with all its consequences, including different challenges and opportunities for all society members in general.

Below are some of the trends discussed during the WEF conferences.

ENERGY
The digitization of the production and consumption of electricity was discussed. For example, it was mentioned that artificial intelligence is being used more frequently to detect opportunity areas within the efficiency of the energy supply and in maintenance issues associated with power plants based on clean energy or efficient cogeneration. Likewise, it was mentioned that the development of a digital token comparable to virtual assets – also known as cryptocurrencies – is planned to carry out peer to peer transactions between an individual energy producer and an individual energy consumer. That is, for example, when an individual who has a power generation equipment based on solar panels sells its excess capacity to an individual consumer, e.g. one of its neighbors.

It was clearly emphasized that the future of the generation and consumption of energy will be based on the generation and consumption of electricity and eventually derived from renewable energies and power plants operated with natural gas.

Another example of the digitization of electricity and natural gas consumption in the residential and business segments is the use of various digital applications to monitor from a long distance the operation of some electrical appliances. This is, for example, the monitoring of cooling or heating systems, as well as other systems that require energy consumption.

The two main challenges in the generation and consumption of electricity are the decarbonization of the generation and the reduction of social inequalities in the access and consumption. It was mentioned for example that the use of electric cars in countries where energy is generated in coal-based power plants is highly polluting and worse than using traditional vehicles that use gasoline. It was mentioned as well that access to energy in modern times for remote communities is a great challenge and could be offered with the use of clean energy and information technology.

DIGITAL ECONOMY
Many topics related to the current state and development of the digital economy around the world were discussed, among others, the topics of corporate social responsibility, the use and expansion of the 5th generation information technology also known as 5G, the erosion of trust in the use of technology by society in general and governments, the almost monopolistic concentration of the cloud computing industry, freedom of expression, social security in the protection of identity, the militarization of information, corporate mental health, the re-skilling of the workforce in the use of new information technology applications, labor and social displacement, social inequality caused by the low tax collection on digital business activities and very markedly discussed in different panels was the issue of cybersecurity.

There is no doubt that the previous challenges are many and difficult to solve. Without a doubt, these problems would be resolved with the advancement of technology in the coming years, however new ones will emerge, according to the conditions and circumstances of the time.

The issue of trust was mentioned repeatedly and in different panels to be the main business asset in the digital economy. Companies that can ensure the privacy of information by putting the customer first and at the center of the business focus in the sale of products and services will tend to grow faster than others in the same industry, and perhaps, it could be said, may have greater business longevity before the disruptive changes of the future.

THE MEXICAN CONTEXT
There is no doubt that the advancement of information technology has created marked social inequalities in many developed and developing countries. Social economic and wealth inequalities are generally significant, where, for example, it was mentioned that in Mexico 20% of the population concentrates more than 80% of the country’s financial assets.

Likewise, it was discussed that inequalities in the access to information has generated among other things, educational problems and social imbalances.

Given these challenges and given the premise that the advancement of information technology is something inevitable also in Mexico, it is suggested that the current administration could welcome the reality of the information technology advancement to reduce the inequalities that mark the country’s society and implement sustainable public policies to give the majority of the population access to information and the internet for the development of independent business or commercial activities that may create sufficient or additional income for the harmonic sustenance of the families. Also, the financial inclusion of all sectors of society should be strongly promoted, so that everyone can have access to transactions with digital payments on smart phones that have surprisingly reached many sectors of the population.

CONCLUSIONS
There is no doubt that the advancement of information technology is unstoppable. The question is rather whether it is at the same time sustainable from the social point of view in Mexico, as well as in other regions of the world where the population in general is challenging the established economic and political systems, giving raise to new forms of politic ideologies that seek to break with the economic inequalities created by the so-called economic globalisation.

In Mexico, the political/social narrative must be changed and at the same time and a new national mental paradigm must be crafted, taking into account that the advancement of technology is inevitable and that instead of talking about protectionism, we all must be speaking of business globalisation at all levels – inclusive- of individuals who work independently. Today more than ever, markets are global, all that is needed is a new paradigm and global attitude to access the new opportunities that the development of technology offers and will continue to offer to all those who know how to take most of their advantages to create new sources of prosperity as well as family and social well-being.

C.P.C., P.C.FI., Adv. LL.M. MI. Juan Ángel Becerra Cantú
Integrante de la comisión Fiscal Internacional del Colegio
juan.becerra@cgctax.com

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