Posts Tagged ‘MDCP’

h1

SEMA and ITA Partner to Expand Exports of Automotive Specialty Equipment

September 18, 2012

This post contains external links. Please review our external linking policy.

Liz Couch is an International Economist with the Office of Transportation and Machinery’s Automotive Team

The U.S. automotive specialty parts industry is known for being innovative and creative, and the industry association that supports these companies is no different. The Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) recently came up with a new, resourceful way to help its members to increase their exports. SEMA, with the help of a partnership with the International Trade Administration (ITA), has purchased and imported a Toyota HiLux truck as part of a new SEMA program to offer members access to vehicles that are popular for customizing and sold worldwide, but are not sold in the United States.

The program will give SEMA’s members the opportunity to take measurements needed to develop, manufacture and export customized aftermarket products to over 100 countries where the HiLux is sold. What makes this program so valuable is that the majority of SEMA members are small and medium-sized companies, and they would not typically have access to vehicles only sold overseas. SEMA has already held three group measuring sessions and the vehicle will be transported over the next year to individual company sites for those requiring more time.

I had the opportunity to recently attend a two-day measuring session in California where 36 companies participated. It was great to witness the development process first-hand and to hear manufacturers’ enthusiasm for this program.

SEMA members inspect the Toyota HiLux during a recent measuring session held in California. (Photo Commerce)

SEMA members inspect the Toyota HiLux during a recent measuring session held in California. (Photo Commerce)

Last year, SEMA received ITA’s Market Development Cooperator Program (MDCP) award, which provides non-profit industry groups with financial and technical assistance over a 3-year period to go towards projects to help U.S. companies begin or expand their exports.

Award recipients contribute a minimum of two-thirds of their project’s cost, and agree to sustain the project afterwards. SEMA’s MDCP award enabled the Association to embark on its measuring program.

In addition, SEMA, in partnership with ITA, has educated its members about exporting to China and the Middle East, and organized Business Development Conferences to both regions. SEMA’s projects have had the support and assistance along the way from my office, both our domestic and overseas Commercial Service offices, and our country desk specialists.

This has truly been a public-private partnership working towards increasing exports for small and medium-sized U.S. manufacturers and supporting the National Export Initiative (NEI). The potential for U.S. specialty parts manufacturers to expand their reach and share their ingenuity and passion for customized vehicles with the world is truly exciting!

h1

Promoting the RV Lifestyle in China: Recreation Vehicle Industry Association Receives Cooperator Award

September 12, 2012

This post contains external links. Please review our external linking policy.

Charlie Rast is an International Trade Specialist in the Office of Consumer Goods Industries within the Manufacturing and Services division of the International Trade Administration.

Returning from a recent trip to Shanghai and Beijing, representatives of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) had great things to say about the potential for U.S. RV manufacturers in the growth and development in the Chinese RV industry. RVIA’s trip to China June 19 to July 1 was the association’s fourth trade mission to the country.

The U.S. RV industry believes there is great potential for RVs in China. RVs and RV camping are becoming increasingly popular in the country, and U.S. exports of RVs to China are growing. In 2011, U.S. RV exports to China exceeded $24 million, an increase of 78 percent since 2009. China is the third largest market of U.S. RV exports, following Canada and Mexico.

An important issue towards advancing the growth of the RV industry in China is the development of Chinese standards that are compatible with U.S. standards. Among the key achievements during its recent trip was the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between RVIA and the China Automotive Technology and Resource Center (CATARC) to work together on RV standards issues.

RVIA President Richard Coon signs CATARC agreement. (Photo RVIA)

RVIA President Richard Coon signs CATARC agreement. (Photo RVIA)

“This Memorandum of Understanding with CATARC is a significant step toward developing a more formal RV standard for China that is harmonized with our North American standards, which would be a boost to U.S. RV manufacturers and suppliers interested in doing business in the Chinese RV market” RVIA President Richard Coon said in a recent press release.

Among the other organizations and agencies RVIA met with during the trip included the China Ministry of Transportation, to discuss road use regulations affecting RVs, and the Shanghai Tourism Administration to talk about RV and campground projects.

RVIA also met with officials from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers to discuss the association’s role on a new RV committee formed by the organization, as well as China Travel Services to talk about how the company can work with RVIA and its members.

RVIA also met with officials and staff from the U.S. Commercial Service at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, who are assisting U.S. industry’s efforts in the country.

In addition to RVIA’s achievements during the recent trip, ITA recently announced that the association has been selected to receive a Market Development Cooperator Program (MDCP) award from ITA for its programs and initiatives in China, as well as Japan. The RVIA initiative financial award is $300,000 over a three year period.

Under the award, RVIA will work with ITA to accomplish the following objectives:

  • Establish an office in Beijing;
  • Pursue adoption of RV and campground industry standards compatible with U.S. standards;
  • Pursue the inclusion of RV definitions in the China motor vehicle code and removal of regulatory obstacles;
  • Pursue adoption of China Compulsory Certification (CCC) requirements that take into account the unique issues faced by RV manufacturers;
  • Pursue reduction of RV import duties and tariffs;
    Establish a website in Chinese and use social media and trade shows to promote RVing in China with an emphasis on U. S. products;
  • Serve as a resource for growing the RV market and campground development in China;
  • Demonstrate how to operate an RV and tow a trailer; and
  • Pursue opportunities to provide Japan with RVs for the country’s post-disaster assistance efforts.

Through this collaborative effort between the U.S. Department of Commerce and the RVIA, more U.S. made recreation vehicles will find their way to the highways and byways of China.

(This article was edited on May 8, 2013 to correct the title of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association.)

h1

May is World Trade Month

May 1, 2012

Cory Churches is a Communications Outreach Specialist in the Office of Public Affairs at the International Trade Administration.

May is the harbinger of Spring (here in the Northern Hemisphere) but it’s also what I like to call the “month of weeks”. In addition to being Bike Month (as proclaimed by the League of American Bicyclists) it is also a celebration of many of the things we here at the International Trade Administration hold near and dear to our hearts.

Bike messengers in Hannover, Germany (Photo T.MoE via Flickr)

Bike messengers in Hannover, Germany (Photo T.MoE via Flickr)

In May we celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week (May 5-13), National Small Business Week (May 14-20), and last but certainly not least World Trade Week (May 21-26). All month we will be highlighting programs, industries, and milestones from across the organization that fit into these three (and sometimes all) themes.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the E-Awards, created to “afford suitable recognition to persons, firms, or organizations which contribute significantly in the effort to increase United States exports.”

The U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement enters into force on May 15 and we will have information about the economic impact of the agreement and opportunities for key industries as a result of the provisions of the agreement.

The annual TradeWinds Forum takes place May 14-22 and we will be highlighting stories from Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam where hundreds of companies will be networking with government and industry leaders to find connections, partners, and ultimately sales in new markets.

Speaking of partners, the Market Development Cooperator Program (or MDCP) will highlight one of their many successes with a profile of the Independent Film and Television Alliance. IFTA became a partner in 2010 with the goal of “enhancing the global competitiveness of its industry and increase the exports of U.S. independent motion picture exports by an creating American Pavilion at the Hong Kong International Film and Television Market.” We will hear of their ultimate success and track their progress.

Keep an eye out for upcoming stories and follow us on Twitter @TradeGov.

h1

ACF, Green Technology Exports, Brazil and a Two-Year Partnership

November 15, 2010

This post contains external links.  Please review our external linking policy

Cora Dickson is a Senior International Trade Specialist with the International Trade Administration working in the Office of Energy and Environmental Industries

With three breakout sessions on “green technologies” over the next two days, the Americas Competitiveness Forum (ACF) is the perfect setting to officially launch a two-year Market Development Cooperation Program (MDCP) award, “Export Green: Growing SME Exports to Brazil.”

Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sánchez (center) presents MDCP award at the Americas Competitiveness Forum in Atlanta on November 14.

Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sánchez (center) presents MDCP award at the Americas Competitiveness Forum in Atlanta on November 14.

Like all MDCPs, this will result in a close working partnership between the cooperator, in this case the National Chamber Foundation, and the International Trade Administration (ITA).  On average, for every dollar that ITA invests in MDCP awards generates $125 in exports; awards are granted only to non-profit groups.  As an industry expert on the staff of the Office and Energy and Environmental Industries, my role will be to coordinate ITA and U.S. government resources and to liaise with the cooperator.  

Yesterday during an intimate meet-and-greet for U.S. ACF attendees, Under Secretary Sánchez and Assistant Secretary Camuñez congratulated the Chamber Foundation and pledged ITA support for the exciting array of activities being planned – including trade missions, business forums, webinars, and Brazilian buying missions to green tech trade shows in the United States.  Steven Bipes, Executive Director, Brazil-U.S. Business Council, and Kathleen McInerney, Manager, Trade Roots were both on hand to receive the award and talk about the goals of the partnership.  It all starts with a survey of U.S. green tech companies.  The results of the survey will provide a foundation on which to build the MDCP, and also help the cooperator keep companies apprised of upcoming events and opportunities.   If you are a green tech small or medium-sized company interested in entering or expanding your overseas activities especially in Brazil, please take the survey.

Non-profit organizations interested in hearing more about how they can apply to become an MDCP partner can attend “Partnering to Double Exports” on December 1.

h1

Colorado Receives MDCP Award for Cleantech

December 17, 2009

Amy Reichert is the Director of Trade and Investment for the Americas at the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT).   

It took two tries, but this year our team of trade experts at the Colorado International Trade Office joined the ranks of MDCP recipients with a program tailored to promote exports of cleantech and environmental products and services to China and Mexico.  CO-EXist, or Colorado Export of Innovative and Sustainable Technologies, officially launches in January, 2010. 

We vaguely knew about MDCP, but it wasn’t until we met another MDCP recipient at a trade show in Chile that we started to see its value and brainstormed ideas for a program of our own.  The International Trade Office (ITO) team enthusiastically began to form our proposal. 

We explored markets and industries where we thought we could have an impact among Colorado exporters.  With a strong state-wide push to develop the “New Energy Economy”, we narrowed our industry focus to renewable energy.  But looking more closely at our base of potential exporters, we expanded the focus to incorporate all environmental technologies: water and wastewater infrastructure; air pollution control; energy efficiency; clean and renewable energy infrastructure and generation; waste management and recycling; monitoring and compliance; green building; transportation technologies; and the list goes on…. 

Maybe it’s our inherent desire to protect the natural beauty that is Colorado, or our deeply-rooted mining history, but we’ve long had a strong base of environmental companies, and we designed our program to capitalize on and further strengthen that core competitive advantage.  Colorado’s cleantech culture is evidenced by the fact that we are the first state in the nation to pass a Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) by a vote of the people.

Next up, picking our target markets.  We have some advantages in Mexico with an office in Mexico City, Spanish-speaking staff, and significant market demand.  It’s also often a market picked by first-time exporters.  China is also key.  It’s a large and growing market, but can be difficult to navigate, especially for small companies.  Through CO-EXist, and with the support of our MDCP team, we believe we can reduce risk and facilitate market entry for Colorado companies.

Although our first application was unsuccessful, the seeds had been planted.  Even without MDCP support, we began implementing components of our proposal – and with great success!  We applied again and were rewarded for our efforts.

Now with the full support of our MDCP team, and other local partners, we look forward to a fruitful partnership and many company success stories!

h1

Big Business at Big Iron

November 2, 2009

(This post contains external links.  Please review our external linking policy.)

Heather Ranck is Director of the Fargo, North Dakota US Export Assistance Center. She is also active on the Agribusiness Team, and in that capacity she promotes the export of US-made agricultural machinery throughout the world.

So Much to Do, So Little Time

I keep telling myself: sleep is overrated! Somewhere between the 1 a.m. airport pickup for my colleague arriving from China; and the 7:30 a.m. Ex-Im Bank finance meeting sleep tends to take a back seat to all the organizing, facilitating, entertaining and crisis management that is inherent in putting on any large event. The Big Iron Farm Machinery Show is the biggest agricultural machinery show in the Upper Midwest, and in 2007 we decided to make it a global event when the former Soviet countries began showing very high interest in our large scale farm machinery built in North Dakota. This, our third year, is once again packed with activity and opportunities for the 150+ foreign buyers who are descending on Fargo to learn about American large scale crop farming.

This year I focused my recruiting efforts on Africa, a new frontier for large scale farm equipment. Having lived in Mozambique and Congo, I wanted to scope out the prospects, so in May 2009 I took a 3-week trip to South Africa, Angola and Mozambique. After 144 meetings I learned a lot about the needs and opportunities for farm equipment in Africa. We had a delegation of 25 Africans at Big Iron this year, and I would like to see American technology helping increase food production in Africa.

The Big Iron International Visitors Program is a collaborative effort between the U.S. Commercial Service (the primary federal government export assistance agency) and the North Dakota Trade Office (a state of North Dakota trade promotion organization); and our combined team of 10 people coordinates very closely on all recruiting, events planning, logistics, interpreting, transportation and programming.

During the show, the hub of all the activity is the International Visitors Pavilion, for which the International Trade Administration’s Market Development Cooperator Program (MDCP) provided substantial funding for the meeting rooms this year. This is Grand Central Station for buyers and sellers, with meeting rooms, food and COFFEE!

We are always coming up with new elements to the program, and one of my new ideas this year was to hold an international soccer match. We had a beautiful, sunny day in Fargo and Fargo Parks let us use the best fields in Fargo. The game ended in a 4-4 tie, further ensuring international harmony.

I also have taken on the activity of ensuring adequate language assistance for buyers and sellers. I speak Portuguese, and therefore did quite a bit of interpreting for the Angolan delegation this year. We are fortunate to have 3 universities in the Fargo-Moorhead area, so we recruit student volunteers to facilitate business meetings throughout the week.

Big Iron 2009 was as exciting as ever this year with representation from 12 different countries, many of them new to Big Iron. It is thrilling to watch the years of effort leading to deals being negotiated before our eyes; and millions of dollars of US agricultural machinery being shipped all over the world.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 345 other followers