The Americas Competitiveness Forum - 2008
U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez and Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin co-hosted the second annual Americas Competitiveness Forum (ACF), which was held on August 17-19, 2008, in Atlanta, Georgia. The Forum provided an opportunity for governments, the business community, and representatives from academia and non-governmental organizations to discuss actions that can be taken to improve competitiveness and economic prosperity in the Americas.
ACF 2008 was attended by more than 900 participants representing 26 of the 34 democratically elected governments in the Western Hemisphere. Among the key government participants were Presidents Colom of Guatemala, Saca of El Salvador, and Uribe of Colombia, Vice President Morales of Nicaragua, and over 50 foreign government officials.
Other notable accomplishments of ACF 2008 include:
- ACF 2008 Final Report highlights the best practices that were discussed at the plenary sessions and breakout sessions on the following topics: Alliances in Business and Education, Renewable Energy, Trade Logistics, and Travel and Tourism in the Americas.
- Western Hemisphere Competitiveness Survey focuses on the views of ACF participants regarding the ability of Western Hemisphere nations to successfully compete in the global economy. Results of the survey will be published on the ACF Web site.
- Commitment by the countries in the Western Hemisphere to continue cooperating on economic issues and enhanced regional competiveness. Chile will host the 2009 ACF and the 2010 ACF will be held in Atlanta.
- Increased trade and investment opportunities developed during the more than 200 business-to-business meetings facilitated by the U.S. Department of Commerce in Atlanta.
- Western Hemisphere Textiles/Apparel Cooperation to promote further growth in the region’s textiles and apparel trade.
- Latin American Small Business Initiative launched to help small businesses in the Americas take advantage of trade opportunities in the hemisphere.
ACF 2008 exceeded expectations for facilitating a dynamic, honest, and constructive dialogue among Western Hemisphere leaders on improving the region’s competitiveness. The 2009 ACF will be held in Santiago, Chile, and will build upon the success of this Forum.
“The future of competitiveness in the Americas depends upon a shared commitment to openness and democracy embodied by our dialogue in Atlanta. This ongoing discussion brings key public- and private-sector leaders together to discuss ways to improve our competitiveness in the global marketplace.” –U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez.
|U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez speaks about the importance of competitiveness in theWestern Hemisphere.
||U. S. Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez and Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin join Presidents Saca of El Salvador, Colom of Guatemala, and Uribe of Colombia on stage at the ACF 2008.