Post by Vinai Thummalapally
The United States continues to be the premier investment destination for entrepreneurs and investors from all around the world. International companies are serious about committing to the U.S. market, evident by the overwhelmingly positive response to the last SelectUSA Investment Summit in March 2015.
The Summit is an unparalleled opportunity to bring together businesses from all over the world, economic development organizations (EDOs) from every corner of our country, high-level government officials, and others working to facilitate investment in the United States. Foreign direct investment (FDI) creates American jobs, contributes to U.S. innovation, and bolsters American exports. In fact, in 2013, U.S. affiliates of foreign companies employed 6.1 million people, spent $53 billion on research and development, and produced more than one-fifth of all U.S. goods exports.
These companies know that success in the U.S. market can help drive success globally. A great starting point is access to millions of global consumers here and abroad through free trade agreements. Our nation is incredibly diverse and provides a thriving culture of innovation, the most productive workforce, strong intellectual property protections, and a stable energy supply. Here in the United States, companies of all sizes—from start-ups to multinationals— can find the ideas, resources, and market they need to be globally competitive.
Our unique environment for innovation will be the main theme of this year’s Summit. The United States is a world leader in research and development (R&D) and intellectual property protection. In 2014, it was estimated that more than 31 percent of total world R&D expenditures took place in the United States. Here, companies can increase their competitiveness by partnering with top-flight research institutions and employing cutting-edge manufacturing techniques.
The 2016 Summit will feature panels and speakers at the forefront of innovation in the United States. As a participant, you will be able to submit topic proposals and potentially present at the SelectUSA Academy, a pre-Summit orientation that covers the fundamentals of investing and promoting investment in the United States. During the Summit, you will also hear and gain insight from renowned professionals, investors, and thought leaders.
Both the 2013 and 2015 SelectUSA Summits were filled to capacity. Last year, we welcomed thousands of participants to Washington. President Barack Obama, six Cabinet members, and three U.S. State Governors addressed representatives from more than 70 international markets, including companies, business associations, and representatives from all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and Guam. Participants got the chance to hear from several top executives and high-profile business and government leaders, who shared their insight on the latest business trends. U.S. economic developers from across the country and international investors met face-to-face. More than 1,700 individual business meetings were facilitated by the U.S. Commercial Service or initiated directly by participants.
I strongly encourage you all – from international start-ups to multinationals to state and local economic developers across the United States – to register soon to join us June 19-21, 2016 in Washington, D.C. I look forward to welcoming you to what I expect to be another successful SelectUSA Investment Summit and a win for the United States and the entrepreneurs who invest in our communities. The United States is open for business!