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New Strategic Partnership with Georgetown University

July 3, 2019

About the Authors: Vincent Tran, an international trade specialist, and Yuki Fujiyama, a trade finance specialist, are staff members of the Office of Finance and Insurance Industriesin the Industry and Analysis unit within the International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

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

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U.S. Commerce Deputy Assistant Secretary for Services James Sullivan (right) and Dr. Paul Almeida, Dean, Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business (left) sign a Strategic Partnership agreement.

In a ceremony held on June 26, 2019, at the U.S. Department of Commerce headquarters in Washington, D.C., the Department’s International Trade Administration (ITA), the federal government’s lead export promotion agency, and Georgetown University, one of America’s oldest universities based in the nation’s capital, signed a Strategic Partnership agreement to support U.S. exports and international trade.  U.S. Commerce Deputy Assistant Secretary for Services James Sullivan and the University’s McDonough School of Business Dean Paul Almeida participated in the signing ceremony to execute an agreement to launch a unique collaboration specifically aimed at strengthening global competitiveness of the financial technology (fintech) sector, one of America’s fastest-growing sectors in need of support from both government and academic programs.

Fintech is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the U.S. economy, with American fintech firms raising $12.4 billion in funding in 2018, or 43% more than 2017, according to CB Insights.  By focusing on collaborative research on blockchain technology, this partnership represents an important step in helping U.S. fintech firms become more competitive in the global marketplace and pursue opportunities with the 95 percent of world consumers who live outside of the United States,” said James Sullivan, U.S. Commerce Deputy Assistant Secretary for Services.  I am particularly pleased that this agreement will also help facilitate cross-educational activities for ITA employees and Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business students.”

“As we seek to deepen our collaborations with Washington, D.C.’s global  business and policy community, we are excited to work closely with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration to combine our expertise to imagine the future of fintech and blockchain technology and their impacts on global business, policy, and competitiveness,” said Dr. Paul Almeida, Dean and William R. Berkley Chair, Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business. “We seek to capitalize on our distinctive qualities, which include our D.C. location, our Jesuit values, and the broader community of thought leaders found throughout the University and our alumni network, to ensure our graduates and faculty are equipped to address the world’s most complex issues. This partnership is one example of how Georgetown McDonough is making an impact.”

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Healy Hall, a National Historic Landmark and the flagship building of the main campus of Georgetown University.

This agreement was made possible through ITA’s Strategic Partnership Program, which enables and enhances mutually beneficial collaboration between ITA and partner organizationsin support of the growth of U.S. exports and the advancement of international trade.

Serving as the Georgetown University point of contact for this agreement is the Center for Financial Markets and Policy (CFMP).  Housed in the University’s Robert Emmett McDonough School of Business, one of the top business schoolsin the Americas ranked by The Financial Times, the CFMP provides thought leadership for global finance by fostering discussion on critical policy and regulatory issues related to global financial markets.  The CFMP will collaborate closely with its counterpart, ITA’s Office of Finance and Insurance Industries, whose main objectives are to help (1) strengthen global competitiveness of U.S. financial services firms and (2) expand access to finance for U.S. exporters and their foreign buyers.

This agreement will help advance the mission of ITA while supporting Georgetown University’s global business education programs as well as CFMP activities. For example, under this agreement, both Georgetown University and ITA will work together to undertake comprehensive research on issues affecting global competitiveness of the U.S. fintech industry with a focus on blockchain technology.  As a type of distributed ledger, a blockchain functions as a decentralized database managed by computers belonging to a peer-to-peer (P2P) network for maintaining a permanent and tamper-proof record of transactional data.  By serving as an important tool in building trust among business and consumers, emerging blockchain technology has the potential to allow for every financial services subsectors to dramatically optimize business processes by sharing data in an efficient, secure, and transparent manner. Therefore, the proposed joint research will not only help strengthen global competitiveness of U.S. fintech firms, an area of key importance to ITA, but will also help enhance Georgetown University CFMP’s ability to develop innovative solutions to challenges facing the financial sector.  In addition, the agreement will help facilitate internships for Georgetown University students to gain real-world international trade experience while providing valuable assistance to ITA staff.

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Business Potential Met Business Opportunity at the 2019 SelectUSA Investment Summit

June 20, 2019

Brian Lenihan is the Executive Director of SelectUSA

The 2019 SelectUSA Investment Summit is over, but its impact is just beginning. Last week, thousands of people from all over the world converged on the Washington Hilton in Washington, D.C. to turn business potential into business opportunity. So much happened that I think it’s best to start with the numbers:

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Exhibitors from the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina greet attendees from the Indian delegation, June 12, 2019

  • More than 3,100 total attendees joined us, including 1,200 global business representatives from a record 79 international markets and over 700 economic development professionals and service providers from 49 states and territories.
  • Four Cabinet secretaries addressed the Investment Summit: Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson, Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin, and Secretary of Energy Rick Perry – all of whom highlighted how each of their departments is working to keep the United States competitive and open for business.
  • More than 3,200 meetings were scheduled and confirmed through the online matchmaking app, meetings that may form the foundation of several investment deals.
  • Three international companies announced U.S. expansions, representing more than 125 new jobs and several million dollars in greenfield foreign direct investment (FDI) in Idaho, Ohio, and Colorado.
  • The Governor of Mississippi announced a $59 million investment by a California-based aerospace company in the Magnolia State.

Beyond the informative sessions, exciting news was made. Ivanka Trump, joined onstage by Secretary Wilbur Ross and Siemens USA CEO Barbara Humpton, announced that more than 65 global companies had committed to creating over 930,000 apprenticeship and training opportunities for U.S. workers as part of the White House’s Pledge to American Workers. “This is not only the right thing to do … it’s good business,” Trump said. “There is a positive return on investment for this continual investment in what is the best workforce in the world.”

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Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross moderates a fireside chat on workforce development with Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump and Siemens USA CEO Barbara Humpton, June 12, 2019

The SelectUSA Tech Startup Investment Spotlight was an exciting first for us, an intensive program of pitching sessions and networking designed to connect early-stage startups with U.S. investment opportunities. Forty companies made their pitch to U.S. incubators and accelerators, all with the goal of breaking into the world’s largest market. Three companies were chosen, all winning hours of legal consultations and media training by law firm Green & Spiegel and a business accelerator program in Silicon Valley. The winning companies are: Spanish artificial intelligence platform company Moonshot, Hungarian container manufacturing company Continest, and Israeli food-tech company DouxMatok.

Another first at the Investment Summit was Industry Row, where associations not only had the opportunity to exhibit and network with attendees, but to also present a 30-minute “State of the Industry” presentation for investors and EDOs alike.

Four different companies made news for another reason: investment projects valued at almost $100 million were announced in four states. Italian manufacturer Modula will invest $26 million in Franklin, Ohio to establish operations and create 100 jobs. Taiwan-based dairy product manufacturer Jetton Biochemistry Co., Ltd. chose Nampa, Idaho as the location of its next plant, a $2 million project that will create 25 jobs. Australian freight company MyFreight announced that it would invest $500,000 to establish operations in Denver, Colorado, part of an effort to duplicate its $40-million success from Down Under to the United States. Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant announced that California-based aerospace company Relativity Space will invest $59 million and create nearly 200 jobs at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Hancock, Mississippi.

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Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump join more than 65 global companies to sign the Pledge to America’s Workers, June 12, 2019

It was an honor (and a thrill) to experience this international excitement firsthand. SelectUSA is the embodiment of the U.S. government’s commitment to creating an open, welcoming, and competitive business environment. It’s a program whose core mission is to promote job-creating FDI. The SelectUSA Investment Summit continuously delivers on that mission.

As I look back on another successful Investment Summit, I look forward to the American jobs that will be created as a result. To the world’s business investors, I say: The United States is open for your business, and SelectUSA is here to make sure you have the information and resources needed to invest and succeed here. To America’s hard-working economic developers, I say: Thank you for consistently—and expertly—driving investment into the United States – SelectUSA is here to assist you.

Thank you.

Learn more about SelectUSA and its services by visiting www.selectusa.gov. Stay in the SelectUSA know by signing up for email updates and following @SelectUSA on Twitter.

 

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Access to Asia-Pacific Privacy Certification Expands in the United States

June 13, 2019

Michael Rose works in ITA’s Office of Digital Services Industries 

On May 31, 2019, Schellman & Company, LLC of Tampa, Florida became the second U.S. Accountability Agent under the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Cross Border Privacy Rules (CBPR) System.

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Schellman joins TRUSTe, which was approved in 2013, in offering services to independently assess and certify U.S. companies’ compliance with CBPR program requirements. Schellman’s participation provides businesses operating in the Asia-Pacific region with greater access to data privacy certification services to facilitate cross-border data flows while promoting data privacy. 

“We have heard the call from U.S. industry for more Accountability Agents in the United States to promote greater options and more competitive pricing for the growing variety of companies seeking the benefits of a CBPR certification,” said Jim Sullivan, who performs the duties of the International Trade Administration’s Assistant Secretary for Industry & Analysis. “We are pleased that Schellman & Company answered the calland look forward to expanding U.S. participation in the CBPR certification system.”

The APEC Cross Border Privacy Rules System

The APEC CBPR System is a data privacy certification mechanism. It was developed and endorsed by the 21 APEC Member Economies after a multi-year, multi-stakeholder process.

To participate in the CBPR System, individual Member Economies must meet certain requirements—such as having at least one Privacy Enforcement Authority that is able to enforce the CBPR requirements against businesses and at least one Accountability Agent.

Businesses that choose to participate in the CBPR System must submit their privacy practices and policies for evaluation by an APEC-recognized Accountability Agent to assess compliance with the CBPR program. Upon certification, the practices and policies will become binding on that organization and enforceable through the relevant privacy enforcement authority.

The CBPR System also promotes regional cooperation in the enforcement of privacy laws through a unique enforcement arrangement consisting of data protection authorities across the region.

Over the last two years, the CBPR has achieved a critical mass of APEC Member Economies. The System is now recognized by most of the United States’ top ten international trading partners. To date, eight APEC Economies have joined the CBPR System—the United States, Mexico, Japan, Canada, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Australia, and Chinese Taipei. The Philippines is currently in the process of joining the System.

Participation in the CBPR System affords these Economies greater opportunities for harmonization, coordination, and cooperation on privacy and data protection issues.

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US Senators Manchin and Capito Invite Global Business Leaders to Attend SelectUSA Investment Summit and Discover Why West Virginia is the Right Choice for Global Companies

June 7, 2019

This post is part of SelectUSA’s EDO Spotlight series, highlighting the work of EDOs around the country recruiting foreign direct investment, how that work supports jobs and economic growth across the United States, and how SelectUSA partners with EDOs to support economic development.This post contains external links. Please review our external linking policy.

Sara B. Dearing is the Executive Director of Discover the Real West Virginia Foundation

West Virginia is the premier location for global companies to expand and relocate. Companies that come to West Virginia are met with a thriving business climate, a dedicated and technically-trained workforce, low cost of doing business, an abundant and inexpensive supply of energy – and unending support from our local, state and federal leaders. manchin-capito_play-button

West Virginia’s U.S. senators not only play a hands-on role when it comes to attracting investment, they are dedicated to ensuring that companies that do invest in West Virginia, succeed.  This unwavering commitment to helping global companies find a home in the Mountain State is why Senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito have teamed up to invite global executives to attend the SelectUSA Investment Summit and to join them at the West Virginia Booth (#714) for the State and Local Night Reception on June 11. Additionally, our senators invite business leaders to attend the West Virginia Spinoff Event, June 13-14, in Wheeling, West Virginia.

Here’s just a few reasons for global executives to choose West Virginia:

  • West Virginia is home to 136 global companies (including Toyota, Gestamp, Covestro, Novartis, TransCanada, Sogefi, Safran, and more) representing 30 countries from around the world with a diverse manufacturing base of industries including aerospace, automotive, chemical and polymers, energy, defense, and information technology, to name a few.
  • West Virginia has the strategic advantage of being in a region with the most cost-effective and abundant natural gas in the industrialized world. This region is right in the middle of half the U.S. market, and close to over two-thirds of U.S. polyethylene consumption.
  • West Virginia (located in Shale Crescent USA) is the most profitable place to locate petrochemical and other manufacturing plants. In fact, Yahoo Finance, the US Department of Energy, oilprice.com and others are calling this region “a second U.S. Petrochemical Hub”.
  • According to the American Chemistry Council, the Appalachian Region is uniquely positioned over the next decade to become a major petrochemical hub with the potential to attract $36 billion in new chemical and plastics industry investment.

It’s not just the aesthetic beauty of the state and its abundant natural resources that make West Virginia a great place to do business.  Deep down, it’s the people that make West Virginia a world-class location, and a state dedicated to providing the resources to elevate your company to the next level. Please come and meet our team, including Senators Manchin and Capito, at the SelectUSA Investment Summit, then join us in Wheeling for our spinoff event, and let’s get down to business.

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The 2019 SelectUSA Investment Summit: Ivanka Trump, Larry Kudlow, Tech Startups & More

June 6, 2019

Brian Lenihan is the Executive Director of SelectUSA

The SelectUSA Investment Summit brings global companies together with economic developers from across the United States, all for one purpose – to connect global business to local investment opportunities. I am honored and thrilled to say that this year’s Investment Summit will feature special guests from the White House. Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump and National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow will provide keynote remarks to more than 3,000 attendees on June 11-12. Both will focus on how business investment and SelectUSA play key roles in America’s economic resurgence.susa graphic

Their inclusion in the program is further evidence of the Administration’s dedication to creating a pro-growth business environment where the world’s companies can flourish. It is also further evidence that the 2019 SelectUSA Investment Summit is the premier business investment event in the United States.

Global companies directly support more than seven million U.S. jobs, and SelectUSA is working to increase that number. But we are also dedicated to working with national and international stakeholders to ensure that American workers are equipped with the skills and education needed to succeed in the 21st century. That’s why Ivanka Trump will join Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and Siemens’ U.S. CEO Barbara Humpton for a panel discussion on workforce development. Later that day, they will join several international business attendees for the signing of the Pledge to America’s Workers, a commitment to expand training and education for the U.S. workforce.

On Monday, the Investment Summit will commence with the Academy, a one-day series of educational panel discussions and presentations designed to get everyone up to speed with the latest trends in foreign direct investment (FDI). These in-depth sessions provide a foundation for attendees, giving them the tools, strategies, and information needed to turn business potential into business opportunity.

The following two days will offer an exciting mix of SelectUSA firsts and mainstage sessions on a wide array of topics: advanced manufacturing, artificial intelligence, workforce development, and more. Executives from Royal Dutch Shell, Siemens, Intel, SoftBank Group, and many more will share their experience and insight. New this year will be several industry-focused discussions between U.S. governors on how their states are working to attract, retain, and grow FDI. Of course, new investments will be announced in the Exhibition Hall as well.

The new features don’t stop there. The first-ever SelectUSA Tech Startup Investment Spotlight will feature dozens of early-stage tech startups eager to jump into the U.S. market. These companies will pitch their products and designs directly to U.S. investors, incubators, accelerators, and economic developers. In other words, it will be a match made in startup heaven.

The involvement of Ivanka Trump and Larry Kudlow and the addition of SelectUSA Tech promise to make this Investment Summit an incredible success. If you are unable to attend this year, I invite you to watch the livestream at SelectUSA.gov/newsroom and follow @SelectUSA on Twitter for on-the-ground updates.

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IAPMO Receives E-Award for Advancing U.S. Plumbing Exports in Asia

June 5, 2019

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

Dain Hansen, Senior Vice President of Government Relations

International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) was honored to be presented with the President’s “E” Award for Export Service by Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross on May 23. The award recognizes the organization’s significant contributions to increase U.S. exports.  One of IAPMO’s most notable contributions to U.S. export expansion has been its success in supporting foreign adoption of U.S. developed and internationally recognized plumbing standards to open new export markets in Asia.IAMPO LOGO

Plumbing in the United States represents a $92 billion industry, employing more than 500,000 workers and comprising 100,000-plus companies, large and small. Manufacturing accounts for $8.4 billion of that — with domestic demand for plumbing products rising 6.3 percent annually to reach $12.3 billion in 2019.

The global market has great potential for American manufacturers. U.S. companies in this sector have manufacturing facilities in more than 30 states and export to 198 international markets. Demand for plumbing fixtures alone accounted for $83 billion in 2017 and that market is expected to reach as much as $120 billion by 2024, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of slightly above five percent between 2018 and 2024.

IAPMO chose to work with Indonesia on adoption of U.S. developed and internationally recognized plumbing standards because of its large domestic consumption base. The country’s middle class, with increasing levels of disposable income and purchasing power, has grown substantially from 38 percent of the population (81 million people) in 2003 to 56.6 percent (131 million people) in 2010. Indonesia was ranked the world’s 16th largest economy with a GDP of $978 billion in 2014. By 2030, it is predicted that Indonesia will be the 7th largest economy in the world, provided economic growth rates can be achieved by fully taking advantage of the rapidly expanding consumer class. Additionally, there is tremendous growth in Indonesia’s construction industry, with demand for plumbing products also expected to grow by 64 percent over 10 years, from $1.139 billion in 2013 to $1.865 billion by 2023.

Founded in 1926, the IAPMO focuses its comprehensive services on the technical aspects of the plumbing and mechanical industries. Its membership includes trained labor and contractors, engineers, domestic and non-domestic product manufacturers, suppliers, plumbing and mechanical inspectors, and building officials. IAPMO has assisted with code and standard development, educational programs, and conformity assessment services in regions around the world. IAPMO has also assisted international aid organizations to help bring sound, efficient water/sanitation systems to developing nations. In recent years, it has helped facilitate code development in India and Indonesia, bringing standardized practices and products to these rapidly developing Asian nations.

Five years ago, IAPMO received a $296K award from the U.S. Commerce Department’s International Trade Administration’s (ITA) Market Development Cooperator Program (MDCP) intended to increase the competitiveness of the U.S. plumbing supply industry abroad by generating exports to Indonesia.

The results of this cooperative effort with ITA have been extremely promising. A 2013 memorandum of understanding between IAPMO and Indonesia’s National Standardization Agency resulted in a comprehensive body of regulations — SNI 8153:2015, Plumbing Systems for Buildings — being adopted as the technical basis for Indonesia’s water/sanitation infrastructure. These regulations are improving public safety and the longevity of Indonesia’s infrastructure while also creating greater opportunities for the sale of U.S. plumbing products and services in the Indonesian market. As a result, total annualized U.S. plumbing exports to Indonesia increased by 85 percent over the pre-project period baseline.

IAPMO’s program in Indonesia fits well with ITA’s mission to enhance America’s global competitiveness. ITA accomplishes this by enhancing U.S. industry’s international competitiveness, by promoting trade and investment, and by ensuring fair trade through rigorous enforcement of our trade laws and agreements.  In carrying out its mission, ITA works with trade associations, private corporations, chambers of commerce, government entities, and other organizations.

After seeing the success that can come from joining forces, in 2018 IAPMO was pleased to enter into a Strategic Partnership with ITA to continue to build off the momentum of the success of Indonesia adoption of these standards and work with neighboring countries in Southeast Asia to see similar results. The partnership is an example of how the U.S. government and private sector can work together to advance the vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific region in partnership with foreign markets. The work of this partnership not only advances fair and reciprocal trade for U.S. plumbing exports, but also advances high-quality infrastructure development for Asia – a region that needs roughly $26 trillion of infrastructure investment by 2030.

“We have been fortunate to work with the Department of Commerce and ITA for many years — a relationship that has proven mutually beneficial,” IAPMO CEO GP Russ Chaney said. “Together we have expanded market opportunities for the industry, increased standardization in new markets, and worked to protect the public’s health and safety across the globe. Formalizing our working relationship as an ITA Strategic Partner makes perfect sense, and we are thrilled to take this relationship to the next level.”

IAPMO’s efforts to work with Indonesia to adopt U.S.-developed international standards for its plumbing industry, coupled with its assistance to begin implementing and enforcing those standards, are leveling the playing field for U.S. plumbing exporters and will continue to pay dividends in the years ahead. It is also playing a key role in the helping the U.S. government achieve the vision laid out in the 2017 U.S. Government Global Water Strategy. The strategy focuses on steps that can be taken to sustainably grow water and sanitation services globally and recognizes that “water can be a means of strengthening governance, civil society engagement, and resilience at all levels.” It further states that the “United States benefits directly from engaging on international water issues” and that part of the overall vision of the strategy is to “open up international markets to U.S. technologies and approaches.”

IAPMO and ITA are using the new Strategic Partnership to coordinate outreach to U.S. government agencies, promoting the benefits of encouraging code acceptance to support regional use of plumbing standards used by U.S. industry and U.S. plumbing product exports.

This partnership should ultimately lead to cleaner and healthier societies for Asia and increased exports and jobs for the United States.

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100 Billion and Counting: A New Milestone from Past Participants of the Investment Summit

May 24, 2019

Brian Lenihan is the Executive Director of SelectUSA

The SelectUSA Investment Summit is the place to be if you want to grow your business into an international enterprise. That isn’t hyperbole – it’s job-creating fact. Participants of past Investment Summits have announced more than $103.6 billion in investments in the United States within five years of attending an Investment Summit. Those projects will create or retain over 167,000 U.S. jobs.”

It’s important to note the time frame here. Businesses from around the world come to the SelectUSA Investment Summit to explore the business climate, learn about opportunities, and make connections. Within five years of attending, they’ve announced billions in new projects. That speaks to the quality of companies that come to the Investment Summit, the strength of the U.S. business climate, and the incredible work that economic development organizations do to facilitate investment.

This June 10-12, business investors from around the world will meet at the Washington Hilton in Washington, D.C. to connect directly with economic developers and service providers from across the United States. In addition to hearing from global CEOs and thought leaders in the economic development sphere, they’re traveling to D.C. to turn business potential into business opportunity.

Last year’s Investment Summit saw $600 million in new investment announcements, representing hundreds of new American jobs. One of those companies, Indian steel manufacturer JSW, announced its plans to build a $500 million facility in Mingo Junction, a town of just 3,300 people in eastern Ohio. That investment alone has the potential to transform the town’s economy and job market. JSW’s investment is emblematic of the impact of foreign direct investment (FDI) in the United States.

Confidence in the U.S. market is at an all-time high. Executives from global companies recently confirmed this in the 2019 FDI Confidence Index from A.T. Kearney. This year’s ranking marks the seventh year in a row that the United States has topped the index. “The United States marks its longest-ever run at the top of the Index this year,” A.T. Kearney noted. “likely reflecting its large domestic market, continued economic expansion, competitive tax rates, and technological innovation capabilities.”

I invite you to join us next month. You’ll see why A.T. Kearney continues to rank the United States as the best place in the world to do business. Coming to the Investment Summit isn’t just window shopping. There are actual opportunities here that a business can act on, and there are more than 100 billion pieces of evidence of that.

Visit www.selectusasummit.us for more information and follow @SelectUSA on Twitter for the latest updates on the Investment Summit.