Posts Tagged ‘Indonesia’

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An Infrastructure Trade Mission to Two Developing Markets

December 4, 2012

Adam S. Wilczewski serves as the Chief of Staff of the International Trade Administration.

Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Francisco Sanchez (L) speaks on a panel in Hanoi, Vietnam on November 14, 2012 with (L-R) Ambassador David B, Shear, Leocadia Zak of the U.S. Trade Development Agency and John Moran from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation.

Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Francisco Sanchez (L) speaks on a panel in Hanoi, Vietnam on November 14, 2012 with (L-R) Ambassador David B, Shear, Leocadia Zak of the U.S. Trade Development Agency and John Moran from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation.

Asia is home to many of the world’s fastest-growing economies. Countries like China and India readily come to mind. The impressive development of other Asian nations, however, should not be overlooked.

Two countries that have made big economic strides in recent years are Indonesia and Vietnam. They are among the fastest growing countries in the region, with growth rates of 6.5 and 5.9 percent, respectively, in 2011.

Both are members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the bloc of 10 states that forms the United States’ fourth-largest trading partner, making Indonesia and Vietnam important to the U.S economy.

For this reason, the U.S. government is committed to further improving trade relations with both of them.  Under Secretary for International Trade, Francisco Sánchez, recently led an Infrastructure Trade Mission there, underscoring these countries importance.  This trip marked Sánchez’s third visit to Vietnam in 20 months.  Our U.S. Government partners at the U.S. Trade Development Agency and Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) joined the ITA on this trip for a true whole-of-government effort.

Eight U.S. infrastructure companies – Black and Veatch, Cisco Systems, General Electric Company, Honeywell International, Inc., Oshkosh Corporation, The Shaw Group, Westinghouse Electric Company, and WorleyParsons, LLC – took the opportunity to explore these two foreign markets. Both countries have pressing infrastructure needs due to their high growth rate, offering exciting prospects for U.S companies in that field.

While in Jakarta, Indonesia – our first stop – the delegation met with public and private sector leaders to discuss opportunities that would be mutually beneficial to both of our economies.

Here, OPIC signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Indonesian Infrastructure Guarantee Fund (IIGF). The organizations pledged to work more closely together to promote private sector infrastructure investment in the world’s fourth most populous country.  A supportive Under Secretary Sánchez stated that “increased investment in infrastructure supported by OPIC will help to accelerate Indonesia’s already-rapid economic growth.”

In Vietnam, the participants met with numerous government officials and representatives from the private sector. Highlights on the agenda included an encounter with the Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and an American Chamber of Commerce hosted lunch in Hanoi.

Most discussions during the trade mission focused on the potential for collaboration on infrastructure projects in areas such as energy, aviation, environmental technology, architecture, construction and engineering.

This Infrastructure Trade Mission is another example of how the U.S. government is working to meet the National Export Initiative’s goal of doubling U.S. exports by the end of 2014.

Southeast Asia is an export market with great potential for U.S. businesses. This growing economic and political importance was underscored by the fact that President Obama chose to visit the region in November directly following his reelection.

Together, working in partnership with the U.S. business community, the International Trade Administration and the entire U.S. Government hope to continue to make progress in meeting infrastructure needs abroad in order to support good-paying jobs here at home.

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Featured Trade Event: Trade Winds Asia

October 4, 2011

May 14–22, 2012
Trade Winds Asia
Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam

Three Buddha stone heads, Singapore. (© Hayden Bird/iStock)

Three Buddha stone heads, Singapore. (© Hayden Bird/iStock)

East Asia is one of the most lucrative regions in the world for U.S. exporters, with growing sales during the past several years. Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam together purchased more than $47.7 billion worth of U.S. merchandise in 2009 and more than $62.7 billion in 2010. Trade Winds Asia can help U.S. companies take advantage of those markets.

The central event of Trade Winds Asia will be a three-day business development conference on May 16–18, 2012, in Singapore. Before and after the conference, four separate trade missions will offer participating businesses the opportunity to visit Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, or Vietnam.

The conference location, Singapore, is home to a sophisticated and modern economy that offers excellent opportunities for U.S. firms interested in penetrating the Asian market. It offers free port status; a straightforward, English-speaking, U.S. style of doing business; strong intellectual property rights protection; and suffers from very little corruption. The country is a major trading hub. It imports and exports products from consumer goods to high-technology and industrial goods for reexport to third countries.

By participating in Trade Winds Asia, companies will benefit from a variety of events tailored to their needs, including prearranged consultations with up to 13 specialists of the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service representing 14 countries, access to high-visibility business networking events with leading industry and government officials, and prearranged business meetings with representatives from firms throughout the region.

Previous Trade Winds that focused on Europe and the Americas have offered outstanding returns. One participant from last year’s Trade Winds event in Mexico said, “We had a chance to interact with local and global companies and shared experiences that cannot be learned in any other way [than] just by ‘doing it.’ The forum was a terrific channel to accelerate and enhance entering a region for us.”

The cost to participate in Trade Winds Asia ranges from $1,950 to $4,850 per company for one representative, depending on firm size and the number of mission stops. There is a $500 fee for each additional company participant in the Singapore event and $250 for each additional mission stop. Mission participants are responsible for travel, lodging, most meals, and incidentals. Applications must be received by March 30, 2012. For more information about the trade mission, visit its Web site or contact Shannon Christenbury of the USFCS, tel.: (704) 333-4886; e-mail: shannon.christenbury@trade.gov, or Judy Kornfeld of the USFCS, tel.: (703) 235-0331; e-mail: judy.kornfeld@trade.gov.

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Day 3 — Education Symposium and Matchmaking in Jakarta

April 4, 2011

Amanda Lawrence is an intern working with the U.S. Commercial Service to support the Education Mission to Indonesia and Vietnam.

This morning, mission participants attended a Symposium on US-Indonesian Higher Education Partnership & Exchange at the Sampoerna Strategic Square. U.S. and Indonesian government officials discussed the importance of educational ties and improving bilateral education partnerships. Education sector executives who were also present spoke on the current industry climate.

After the symposium, the mission participants also attended several breakout sessions depending on their interests. U.S. Commercial service staff arranged one-on-one matchmaking sessions for many schools interested in meeting student recruitment agencies.  School representatives also had an opportunity to meet with local universities and explore partnership prospects.  Lastly, several school representatives visited local high schools and met with administrators, counselors, teachers, and students.

Ambassador Marciel hosted the participants at his residence for a farewell reception this evening. Many of the representatives were thrilled with the day’s events and the reception. “The US Ambassadors reception was a great event as shows the commitment  the US government has to welcome Indonesian students to study in  the USA,” said Joseph Indrawan of the University of Buffalo.  John Lorentz of Shawnee State University agreed, “a productive mission that will lead to increased educational connections between the US and Indonesia, a mission crowned with a superb reception at the US  Ambassadors residence.”

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Day 2 — Education Mission, Education Fair in Jakarta

April 3, 2011

Amanda Lawrence is an intern working with the U.S. Commercial Service to support the Education Mission to Indonesia and Vietnam.

Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sanchez rings the gong to open the Education Fair hosted by The Putera Sampoerna Foundation.

Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sanchez rings the gong to open the Education Fair hosted by The Putera Sampoerna Foundation. (Commerce Dept. Photo)

We spent all day at the Education Fair at Sampoerna Strategic Square in Jakarta. Each school exhibited at the fair and met students and their parents. There were 56 exhibitors and approximately 6,000 students and more than 10,000 attendees including parents attending the fair.

Many of the representatives from the schools participating in the mission have many things to say about the experience, such as “I’ve never seen an education fair so well-organized,” said Murat Tas of University of Incarnate Word. “This is really the best!” and “I was very impressed with the students — they were very articulate and asked all the right questions,” said Jayati Ghosh of Dominican University of California.

Attendance was larger than expected and Marcos Fragoso of the University of Incarnate Word said “Attendance at the fair was really really good, and the quality of the student was excellent.”

And James Reidel of University of Pennsylvania said “This mission is an excellent use of our taxpayer dollars and I’m so pleased to be part of it!”

Overall, the first education fair was a great success!

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Day 1 of the Education Trade Mission — Jakarta, Indonesia

April 2, 2011
 
Amanda Lawrence is an intern working with the U.S. Commercial Service to support the Education Mission to Indonesia and Vietnam.

 

 

Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sanchez (left) meets with Suryadharma Ali, Indonesian State Minister of Cooperative and Small and Medium Enterprises (center) and U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia Scot Marciel (right)

Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sanchez (left) meets with Suryadharma Ali, Indonesian State Minister of Cooperative and Small and Medium Enterprises (center) and U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia Scot Marciel (right). (Commerce Dept. photo taken April 3, 2011)

Today is the first day of the Education Mission to Vietnam and Indonesia. As of this morning, all 56 schools had arrived in Jakarta, Indonesia.  There is a clear excitement in the air about the upcoming events. To officially kick off the mission, the Putera Sampoerna Foundation hosted a welcome reception for all the participants at the Sampoerna Strategic Square. The Putera Sampoerna Foundation provides scholarship, training and support for future Indonesian leaders and is a key partner in for the Mission to Jakarta.

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Leading the Way for Global Higher Education

March 31, 2011

Francisco J. Sánchez is the Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade

Today we depart for Jakarta, Indonesia for the first leg of the largest Commerce-led education trade mission ever. I am excited for this mission as we are bringing 56 colleges and universities to explore the opportunities to recruit international students to study in the U.S. as well as possibly setting up partnership and student and faculty exchanges.

I was excited to host my very first Twitter chat earlier today and I was happy to answer questions such as, how are foreign students studying in the U.S. an export and why were Vietnam and Indonesia targeted for this mission. To each, I answered that when foreign students come to study in the United States, their tuition and fees, as well as their living expenses help support the local economy in addition to the national economy. Education services ranks among the top 10 U.S. service exports, right between environmental services and safety and security. These two countries place a high value on higher education and have tremendous potential for sending students to the United States.  And, in Indonesia, boosting the number of Indonesian students studying in the United States is a top priority of the U.S. Embassy.
 
Building ties with international students not only helps our American students gain a greater level of international understanding—a critical skill for success in the 21st century global economy—but familiarizes future global leaders with the American people and U.S. society.

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