Twenty-seven years to the day after the fall of the Berlin Wall announced the collapse of communism in Europe, Donald Trump’s election as US president did rise a lot of questions about the future of the liberal international order.
Trump’s “America First,” led not only to impressing numbers of American citizens who said they want to move to Canada or New-Zealand, but also to greater fear for trade wars, a worldwide “clash of civilizations,” the peace in Europe and East Asia, and further violence in the Middle East. Already in relative decline, the United States is now poised for an angry retreat from the world. This could have enormous consequences for American companies too.
0ptimists hope that Trump didn’t mean what he said during the election campaign; that he will surround himself with seasoned internationalist advisers; and that his wilder instincts will be tempered by the checks and balances of the US political system. Let’s hope so. But nothing in his temperament suggests as much. And with Republicans retaining control over both the Senate and the House of Representatives, Trump will have a freer rein than most presidents. That is especially true in trade and foreign policy, where US presidents enjoy much greater discretion – and where the damage he could do is potentially huge and enduring.
Start with trade : globalization had already stalled in recent years. Now Trump threatens to throw it into reverse. At the very least, his victory kills off the faint hopes of concluding the two jumbo trade deals that Barack Obama’s administration had been negotiating: the completed but unratified Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) with 11 Pacific countries, and the stalled Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) with the European Union.
There’s no doubt that in that case, a lot of American companies will feel the need to search “shelter from the storm” on the old continent. In that case, HDS, located at the heart of Europe can help them with all services they need to establish themselves in Europe and to preserve their privileged contacts with European business? “Whether American companies are looking for help with corporate and legal administration, director services or financial and operational services, HDS can help them find exactly what they need to continue to thrive in their businesses”, says COO Bernard Vandekerckhove.