The Importance of International Public Relations

by Geoffrey Kean



International public relations, a relatively new field, barely existed fifty years ago. With the growth of international business it is now coming into its own, but quite a number of people do not seem to realize as yet what it means. Good international public relations (I.P.R.) can greatly aid a firm and increase its profit. Its absence can do infinite harm. The one side to I.P.R. is that the foreign firm abroad, it often influences the way foreigners think about that firm's home country. Businessmen abroad, corporations abroad, whether they like it or not, are unofficial ambassadors of their country and exert as much and sometimes greater influence than do policies and information services of their government. As the economy gets more and more interdependent, as the number of international corporations and the power of international organizations such as the Common Market increase, it will obviously need more and more sophisticated I.P.R. Nevertheless, the question has to be asked, is it right for everyone? Is it a necessary expense or a luxury?

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