"Globalization" is the sort of word where everyone is expected to know what it means, but where few people could offer a clear definition. Globalization is a controversial issue for business and governments throughout the world. We recognize globalization mainly through its effects. It's a bit like electricity - we can not see it, but we certainly observe what it does.
Globalization can be described as a process by which the people of the world are unified into a single society and function together. This process is a combination of economic, technological, sociocultural and political forces. It's a movement of people, goods, capital and ideas due to increased economic integration.
Globalization is a controversial issue mainly because different groups interpret it in different ways. For its opponents globalization is a threatening word. It prompts visions of large multinationals dominating the world in pursuit of ever-higher profits. Many pressure groups fear that globalization threatens the environment as well as national cultures - they predict that it will make the rich nations richer and the developing countries even poorer than they are. But its supporters have another point of view. They believe that increasing and freer trade between nations will offer prosperity and economic growth for all countries and businesses. So globalization is likely to be a hot potato for the twenty-first century.
I personally think that globalization is an extremely complex web of many things and like any other process it has its positive and negative sights.
As far as the benefits are concerned there it's possible to name next statements: "An opportunity to get acquainted with cultures of different nations; "A variety of choice for consumers: when they can buy in their local stores and supermarkets not only home-produced goods but also foreign ones; "Transnational corporations create additional work places for local people, at the same it' convenient for these large corporations as well: they may locate the labour-intensive part of their production process in countries with a relative abundance of labour in order to minimize their costs; "Another point is risk-sharing. It's more reasonable to invest money not in one company but to create an international company with great amount of subsidiaries in various countries, so it won't have so serious consequences if one of them will not stand cut-throat competition; "This cut-throat competition in the local markets between domestic and foreign producers leads to production of high-quality goods.
And we turn to the disadvantages of globalization, they are: "Pollution of the environment (and there one peculiarity should be admitted - developed countries try to locate their harmful for the environment factories and works hot in their own countries but in developing countries); "Globalization destroys cultural identity, for example Europeans usually try to impose their customs and traditions on Asian people; "Multinational corporations prefer to use cheap labour-force of developing countries for instance in Asia. And at the same time they provide their orkers with bad and sometimes even awful working conditions; "It's difficult for domestic producers to compete with multinational corporations especially if it's an infant industry; to cut a long story short globalization causes inconveniences for local companies; "And last but not least is that we don't actually know to what globalization can lead, we don't realize its consequences.
And it's necessary to say that globalization causes antiglobalization. Anti-globalists are protesting against the dominance in the world economy of large (usually American) multinational companies. They consider that these companies spread their own western culture on the other cultures and that they exploit developing countries and the environment in general.
As a result anti-globalists try to struggle against globalization in forms of demonstrations and rallies.
For example in November 1999 a collection of 50,000 environmentalists, students, anarchists and ordinary people gathered in Seattle, USA, to protest against a meeting there of the WTO. The demonstration began peacefully, but by the end of the day protestors had smashed shop windows and destroyed property; as a result the police had fired plastic bullets and gas into the crowd.
It should be said that American companies, such as McDonald's, GAP and Starbucks, are often become targets for violence and vandalism. In 1999 Jose Bove, a French farmer, became a national hero when he demolished a new McDonald's as a protest against the standardization of food, the impact of McDonald's on local business and the high level of US taxes on imported European food.
And in the end I'd like to say that globalization is still a controversial issue for businesses and governments throughout the world and nobody knows when a compromise will be found.