For Immediate Release: November 15, 2010
Contact: Mary Trupo (202) 360-1033
U.S. COMMERCE SECRETARY GARY LOCKE LINKS INNOVATION TO ECONOMIC PROSPERITY AT AMERICAS COMPETITIVENESS FORUM
Western Hemisphere Leaders Meet in Atlanta to Discuss Regional Economic Growth
ATLANTA – Public and private sectors throughout the Western Hemisphere must work together to foster business competitiveness to ensure the region’s economic growth and prosperity was message delivered by U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke during keynote remarks at the fourth annual Americas Competitiveness Forum (ACF) today in Atlanta.
“The high-level leaders in government, business and academia here at ACF face the urgent need to expand jobs and opportunity for our people,” Locke said. “We’re going to need to work together, to push the envelope in technological innovation, in business creation, and in public policy to address these challenges.”
The ACF is the preeminent economic and commercial event in the Western Hemisphere where participants share best practices for enhancing the competitiveness, innovation, and prosperity of the region. President Mauricio Funes of El Salvador, Vice President Angelino Garzón of Colombia, Vice President Rafael Alburquerque de Castro of the Dominican Republic, Vice President Juan Carlos Varela of Panama, and more than 800 attendees from 34 countries have joined Secretary Locke and his co-host, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, for this important event.
“The Americas Competitiveness Forum helps us maintain our competitive edge with others around the world, and it enables the City of Atlanta to strengthen its position as a leading center for global commerce,” said Mayor Reed. “I am honored to welcome U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke and leaders from 34 countries throughout the Western Hemisphere as we gather to share new ideas and best practices for continuing our economic growth, increasing social development, and improving environmental sustainability.”
The ACF 2010 theme is “Building a Prosperous and Sustainable Future for the Americas.” Plenary presentations featuring corporate executives, government leaders, and industry representatives will examine pathways to sustained economic growth and long-term prosperity throughout the region.
U.S. exports to the Western Hemisphere have increased dramatically during the last two decades. Total trade in merchandise between the United States and its 48 Western Hemisphere trading partners totaled $954.1 billion in 2009 -- or 42 percent of total U.S. merchandise exports to the world.
International Trade Administration
The International Trade Administration (ITA) is the premier resource for American companies competing in the global marketplace. ITA has 2,100 employees assisting U.S. exporters in more than 100 U.S. cities and 77 countries worldwide. For more information on ITA visit www.trade.gov.
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