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 Trade Factbook of Alpha Centauri

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Selathorn

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PostSubject: Trade Factbook of Alpha Centauri   Wed Aug 21, 2013 5:45 pm

Overview

Though Planetary Governate once was a relatively poor and backwater polity on the fringes of the civilized galaxy, it has become an economic powerhouse and has established important trading relations with fellow members of the galactic community. All outgoing trade is conducted by agents of various Centauri factions, mainly the Peacekeeping Forces and Morgan Industries. No Centauri trader operates independently, and they are always held accountable to their leaders. Additionally, all Centauri traders or others who are employed overseas are constantly monitored for subversion by foreign ideas, and are constantly rotated to avoid undue exposure to foreign memes. As a result of this, Centauri traders have developed a reputation of being cold and impersonal, although they are generally considered to be some of the more fair and trustworthy traders of the galaxy

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Trading Partners

Exports: Burnination (19%), Rhea (17%), the OrdenReich (9%), Heraklea (8%), the Veridian Dominion (6%), the Bastian Dominion (3%), other (42%).
Imports: Burnination (31%), Rhea (15%), the OrdenReich (7%), Heraklea (5%), the Veridian Dominion (2%), the Bastian Dominion (1%), other (40%).

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Major Exports

Metals - The Centauri have extensive automated mining operations within the Centauri sphere of influence, and as such they produce massive quantities of ore, which are processed within automated factories before being retrieved by Centauri freighters. Enough is produced that a significant surplus remains, which can be exported to foreign nations. Some metals (gold and silver) deemed precious by other nations are considered otherwise useless by the Centauri and as such is one of the Governate's largest exports.

Computers - Though Centauri quantum computers often have compatibility issues with foreign software, they are popular amongst business and academic groups for their ability to easily run Centauri expert systems and for a good raw computronium-to-price ratio. Though the average citizen has little reason to buy one for everyday use, they nevertheless do have a significant market and are a fairly profitable export.

Virches - Owing to decades of experience with them, the Centauri are capable of programing sophisticated virtual worlds for entertainment purposes. Although originally designed for Centauri systems, they can be adapted for foreign systems with some difficulty, and new virches are often developed on multiple platforms. Centauri virches are known to be highly immersive and addictive, although it should be noted that they make rather innocuous vectors of Centauri memetic engineering.

Expert Systems - Similar to the complex algorithms used to plan and predict economic growth employed by all of the Centauri factions, expert systems programmed by the Centauri provide powerful tools used to analyze information and suggest a course of action. This can range from business management assistance to making medical diagnoses, and as such Centauri expert systems have become a major and desirable export, especially to less-developed systems lacking native expertise.

Pharmaceuticals - Compared to foreign pharmaceuticals, Centauri pharmaceuticals are often up to 50% cheaper. Why? Unlike in some polities with more stringent ethics regulations, Centauri policies on clinical trials are almost nonexistent and almost all testing takes place on human subjects who may not necessarily have signed up to be test subjects. This means that Centauri drugs can get to the market much faster, and at a lower price. However, because there is very little disclosure on testing practices, many Centauri pharmaceuticals never make it to market because of foreign regulations. Additionally, one should note that not all Centauri pharmaceuticals are strictly medical, as the Governate is a major producer of recreational drugs.

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Imports

Energy - The Planetary Governate is the largest importer of energy in the galaxy. This is an outgrowth of energy being the basis of the Centauri economy, necessary for maintaining base facilities and powering the massive banks of computronium needed for research. Most of this energy is imported from Burnination in exchange for various metals, inside the quantum batteries that are used as the basis of Centauri energy storage. As such, Centauri freighters carrying loads of metal to and energy from Burnination are a common sight on the tradelanes between the two polities. To a lesser extent energy is imported from other nations, but at nowhere near the volume of Centauri-Burnite trade.

Construction Components - Though Centauri understanding of construction technology has increased in recent years, it still lags behind many other nations. Construction components are often imported from other nations in order to build structures such as space stations for which native production facilities cannot produce the requisite parts. This has begun to change in recent years, but such parts remain a major Centauri import.

Exotic Matter - In order to construct Alcubierre warp drives, exotic matter is necessary to facilitate the space-time dilation used to propel vessels at faster-than-light speeds. Such matter can be difficult to procure and is available at very small quantities, so the Centauri import whatever they can find from foreign nations in order to ensure that there remains an adequate supply for building more warp drives and avoid bottlenecks in production.

Biological Data - Data on exotic forms of life is of high interest to Centauri scientists to help further understanding of xenobiology, and as such the Centauri will pay to purchase such data from individuals and foreign governments who possess it, and data on more exotic forms of life, especially of those with hive minds, is usually worth more to the Centauri. The accompaniment of biological samples also drastically increases the payout for such data.

Artifacts - Though generally a frugal people who shun frivolities, one of the few luxuries sought after by Centauri Talents are unique, one-of-a-kind objects, which are considered to have a unique and intrinsic value unlike other objects. As such, Centauri traders are permitted to use some of their spare time to look and trade for such artifacts, which mostly consist of various works of art, preferably handmade. Objects with high aesthetic value or of an extremely unique nature are, for obvious reasons, extra valuable.
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