Press Release

Readout of Under Secretary Lago’s Trade Mission to Central America

August 24, 2022
Contact: Office of Public Affairs

WASHINGTON – From August 18-23, Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Marisa Lago led a trade mission of 32 U.S. companies to Central America to promote U.S. exports and strengthen economic relations in the region. During this trade mission, U.S. business delegates networked and engaged in face-to-face meetings with distributors, sales representatives, and other prospective partners in six Central American markets: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Panama.

Under Secretary Lago’s official visit began in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, where she met with Honduran public and private sector officials to bolster bilateral commercial ties, advance avenues for mutual economic opportunity and advocate for U.S. exporters. Among the officials Under Secretary Lago met were Minister of Economic Development Pedro Barquero, Minister Erick Tejada, Interim Director of Honduras’ National Electric Energy Company (ENEE), and Executive Director of the Customs Administration Fausto Calix.

In San José, Costa Rica, Under Secretary Lago met with President Rodrigo Chaves Robles at the Central American Business Conference. The two officials discussed how to strengthen the bilateral commercial relationship, including by reducing barriers to trade and Costa Rica’s implementing transparent business and regulatory practices. President Chaves and Under Secretary Lago also discussed expanding opportunities for U.S. companies in the region and ensuring that the mutual benefits of trade and investment are felt broadly and equitably throughout both countries.

Under Secretary Lago also held bilateral meetings with Costa Rica’s Foreign Trade Minister Manuel Tovar, Science, Innovation, Technology and Telecommunications Minister Carlos Alvarado, and Executive President Marco Acuña of the Institute of Electricity (ICE). While in San Jose, Under Secretary Lago also engaged with the U.S. business community to discuss the challenges and opportunities that these businesses and their workers face in the region.

“This trade mission provided unparalleled opportunities for U.S. businesses to better understand key Central American markets as they seek to grow their exports to the region. I look forward to seeing the results of our delegates’ hard work,” said Under Secretary Lago. “I am pleased with the progress that we accomplished, both in advancing prospects for U.S. businesses and workers, and strengthening bilateral economic relations. From supporting individual exporters and their workers to advocating for economy-wide improvements in the commercial environment, this visit demonstrates the Department of Commerce’s unique reach in dynamic markets in Central America and around the world.”

About the International Trade Administration
The International Trade Administration (ITA) at the U.S. Department of Commerce is the premier resource for American companies competing in the global marketplace. ITA has more than 2,200 employees assisting U.S. exporters in more than 100 U.S. cities and 75 markets worldwide. For more information on ITA, visit

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