International business is as old as the world. However, free trade has increased since the 1980s. Trade
tariffs were eliminated, China reformed its economy, and the Internet made communication easier. It led
to globalisation and more international business. Hence, international business is affected by political economic and technological developments.
From a western society perspective, the production of goods and services was transferred to other
continents. Most firms started outsourcing non-core activities leading to more complex, transcontinental
business relations characterised by multi-cultural business relationships.
Soon, technological developments will change international business when the autonomisation of
production processes, 3D printing and cyber-physical systems take over. The Covid pandemic and the
Suez Canal blockade have shown the need to mitigate supply chain risk and strengthen resilience.
Production will partly return to Europe.
This course focuses on international business trends, barriers and enablers, and establishing
international business relationships.