If the government made them available


Hello everyone,

From the book Thak You for Being Late by Thomas Friedman.

For all of these reasons, McKinsey has created its own measure of globalization that basically asks a country or a company or a citizen: Are you in the flow? It’s called the “MGI Connectedness Index.” It ranks different countries on how much they are participating in all the different kinds of global flows, and it is a pretty good indicator of prosperity and growth. Singapore tops the list—followed by the Netherlands, the United States, and Germany.

But there is a message in the bottle: Singapore invested in both the infrastructure to make sure it was participating in every digital flow as well as the education of its workforce, to make sure they could take advantage of those flows if the government made them available. Individual cities that now do the same thing can reap the benefits. So this isn’t complicated: the most educated people who plug into the most flows and enjoy the best governance and infrastructure win. They will have the most data to mine; they will see the most new ideas first; they will be challenged by them first and able to respond and take advantage of them first. Being in the flow will constitute a significant strategic and economic advantage.

By “digital flows” the author means exchange of data/information/knowledge via the Internet.

I can’t understand what “if the government made them available” refers to and implies in the sentence.
Here is how I understand the sentence in question: Singapure invested in the infrastructure and the education of its people (workforce). Singapure did that to let its people participate in the digital flows. So why does the sentence ends with “if the government made them available”? The Singapure government already did all that - it built the infrastructure and provided education for its people.

Thank you.


My only explanation of

“if the government made them available” is 'if the government were (subjunctive) going to make them (these flows) available.



Thank you, Alan, I think I understand it now.