Nevertheless, this growth of ecommerce services could be blocked or hampered by an increasing tendency of the respective national governments to bring trade restrictions to protect their domestic businesses or trade. The study conducted/issued by the Global Express Association (GEA) – a trade body representing DHL, FedEx, UPS and TNT stated that G20 countries have introduced as many as 1500 new non-tariff trade restrictions since 2014. This study was carried out by the consultancy firm Frontier Economics on behalf of GEA. The rise in protectionism or delays in reforms could hinder the realization of e-commerce expansion that is expected to drive the economic growth of developed as well as developing nations.
That is why, the study recommended major custom reforms that included changes to the duty exemption, simplifying and digitizing the required documentation processes and streamlining the inspections. The report laid stress on well-functioning of delivery services particularly with Small and Medium Sized Enterprises or SMEs’ who may be unwilling to set up their own supply chains leading to an increase in international e-commerce activities. In spite, of the global financial crisis, the GEA report states that the international express delivery volumes have grown by 7% on an average over the past five years with the strongest growth outside of Europe and North America.
The expansion of ecommerce is such that one can see more and more ecommerce companies being launched each year that to in many new categories of products such as art, electronic cigarettes, mattresses etc. that were previously the domain of the brick and mortar retail business. Even though, a handful of these ecommerce sites manage to be successful ventures over a long term but about 75% of these startups fail.