The globalization of markets is characterized by an aggressive competitive environment and a development scenario of continuing and accelerated technological innovation and change that can generate disruptions anytime, anywhere. The main players in this context are, on the one hand, the multinational enterprises (MNEs) and their evolving internationalization strategies; and on the other hand, governments and enterprises of developing countries, who aim at technological progress, economic growth and social development by taking advantage of foreign direct investment and other forms of association to MNEs operations such as sub-contracting, original equipment manufacturing (OEM), participation in global supply chains and value chains (GSCs, GVCs), global manufacturing networks (GMNs), joint ventures (JVs) and other kinds of business alliances.

This training package is intended to be an instrument to help firms of developing countries improve their competitive position and grow domestically and internationally by linking with foreign partners, leveraging the relationships with them, and learning further in order to achieve technological self-sufficiency and innovative capabilities of their own. In this connection, particular attention will be given to MNEs strategies and business models, the drivers of their business in developing countries, and their alliances with local firms, including the motivations of the participating enterprises, the opportunities for partnerships, and their negotiation, implementation and management.

This training package will therefore bring to both policymakers and managers of enterprises of developing countries not only an awareness of the international development scenario and the competitive forces they have to cope with, but also an understanding of the strategies and behaviour of multinational companies, of the opportunities available for growth and internationalization in that context, and of how to seize and take advantage of such opportunities to move higher in the supply and value chains. Related to this, the package will enable the users to handle the practical issues associated to the preparation, formation, negotiation and management of the various types of alliances and joint ventures that firms of developing countries may wish to enter into with foreign partners.

The package will capture the realities and the trends in the field of technology and innovation in such areas as information technology, automation, robotics, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, 5G networking, among others, which are embodying what is currently known as Industry 4.0 and what some authors refer to as the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The advent of Industry 4.0 has brought about the emergence of large MNEs in the digital industries and e-commerce; and also disruptive effects on re-orientating global value chains and business alliances in general. For developing countries, the challenges are: creating capabilities to become suitable partners of MNEs in the age of Industry 4.0 and to move higher in the supply and value chains.


Module 1: International Development Scenario

The purpose of this module is to provide the broad picture of the current development scenario, the drivers of MNEs’ expansion and the related challenges and opportunities for developing countries. By the end of the module, the participants should be able to:

  • Understand the global strategies of multinational enterprises
  • Recognize the various types of inter-enterprise collaboration
  • Acknowledge the needed enabling role of government policies
  • Become aware of the new trends brought about by Industry 4.0

Module 2: Business Alliances

This module deals with the subject of business alliances in its broad scope, clarifies terminology and reviews the main forms of alliances and their specific and distinctive features. By the end of the module, participants should be able to:

  • Characterize the different types of business alliances and their features
  • Understand the concept and the characteristics of strategic alliances
  • Become familiar with equity joint ventures as a special form of alliance
  • Recognize the importance of alliances for progress of developing countries

Module 3: Implementing Joint Ventures

This module covers the whole process of implementing joint ventures, both as a form of foreign direct investment (FDI) and as a framework for cooperation and development for host countries. By the end of the module, the participants should be able to:

  • Understand the partners´ interests and expectations, to be accommodated
  • Perceive the various phases in the development of a JV relationship
  • Understand the structure, the clauses and the articulation of a JV agreement
  • Become aware that the JV involves other important, ancillary agreements

Module 4: Business Negotiations

This module deals with negotiations and contracting, having in mind that the success of a business alliance depends to a great extent on the ability of parties to negotiate and achieve mutually acceptable deals. By the end of the module, the participants should be able to understand the following: