There are two main ways that globalization has affected us at the individual level. The first way is that we get a much larger variety of products available in our stores for much lower prices. That's one reason why a DVD player is available for $29 at WalMart. So this saves us money every month and allows us to buy all types of produce year around.
The second way is that many of our manufacturing jobs and factories have been moved to other countries where the labor costs are cheaper and the environmental rules more lax. By losing these jobs, it affects tens of thousands of individual families, and reduces government revenue from taxes.
Globalization affects you and me, and essentially, all citizens of the world in five main ways:
1. It gives people more access to an even broader set of products and services
With laws and regulations that encourage greater unencumbered trade between nations, more products from diverse nations end up being available to consumers worldwide. In addition, companies also have access to a greater array of products and services that they need to run their specific operations.
2. It leads to a decrease or abolishing of subsidies and tariffs
This helps promote a more level playing field between nations and businesses. Without subsidies propping up business operations, and costly tariffs impeding trade, free-flowing healthy competition is encouraged. It fosters innovation and efficiency in companies as they strive to offer products and services that consumers and businesses want, at the best price, and when they need them. Therefore, for you and me, this means more product assortment at cheaper prices.
3. It leads to new opportunities for financing
More companies have access to a broader base of worldwide financial markets and capital from other countries. Therefore, as needed, they can secure monies to expand their operations. As a result, this leads to greater production, which means more goods available for consumers such as you and me.
4. National industries (homegrown or home developed) have greater access to foreign markets
Homegrown companies can broaden their scope and access foreign markets to sell goods and services to increase global market shares. The opening up of access to the marketplaces of other countries was more difficult in the past. However, now, with rampant globalization it is easier and is a window of opportunity for companies, and may be a window that never closes. This is important for you, me, and others because as businesses increase their market shares, growth sales, and profits, they can further expand and create jobs and hire more labor in their home country.
5. A greater interconnection among diverse national economies
This can be good and bad. It is good when there is the free exchange of capital and goods and services. All can benefit from this free-flow of monies, products and services. Consumers and businesses have more choice of goods, and such, and can access products never before available to them from other countries. However, the bad can result when serious troubles in one economy spread like wildfire to other the economies associated with it. An example of this is the Greek contagion (economically-speaking) which reared its head a few years back and looks set to cause some turmoil on the markets again.
Globalization is a reality that has been a game-changer for economies, businesses, cultures, and the geopolitical aspect of civilization.