Vinay Vijay Singh, Senior Advisor, Global Markets, Urbanization & Infrastructure
A successful economy lays the foundation for a successful city, but the city must be able to keep up with an evolving economy to maintain overall success. Global trends show the world is spending far less on infrastructure than is required to contend with the rapid pace of economic development. A Smart Cities movement has risen to address the forces of urbanization around the world. The International Trade Administration’s (ITA) newly released Smart Cities, Regions & Communities Export Opportunities Guide highlights potential business opportunities for U.S. companies along with insights from other Commerce bureaus.
Cities have been the center for commerce since bartering and trade first began. Smart Cities is a development mission aiming to monitor and promote urban sustainability, environmental cleanliness, citizen engagement, governance and critical needs in education and healthcare. The growth of a city places demand on its municipal government to address urban challenges in sectors such as water, energy, transportation and connectivity. Each of these industries represents opportunities to foster business partnerships and bolster prosperity.
The recent $160 million investment in federal research by the White House is aimed to help local communities establish solutions to key problems faced, including traffic congestion, fueling economic growth, managing effects from climate change, fighting crime and improvement of city delivery systems. This initiative is part of the President’s commitment to target federal resources to meet local needs and by providing leadership at a national level, this initiative is just one example of a Smart Cities vision and a huge business opportunity. The ITA continues the Obama Administration’s level of engagement by offering The Smart Cities Guide as another tool for U.S. companies to help make these connections and further expand their global export solutions.
The Smart Cities Guide incorporates Department of Commerce intra-agency smart city initiatives by combining in-depth information for export opportunities into four main categories: Access to Capital, Trade Promotion, Industry Sectors and Internet of Things (IoT). Many bureaus in Commerce are lending their thought leadership to help U.S. cities and businesses find unique solutions to global urbanization issues. ITA’s primary focus in the Guide is to serve as a trade promotion resource for U.S. companies looking to interface with local partners and government officials in markets with export opportunities.
This is the first edition of The Smart Cities Guide and as the U.S. government synthesizes its efforts to continue to elevate U.S. industry leading capabilities in this space, the ITA will look to publish its second edition later this year. Come join our global teams at Discover Global Markets: Building Smart Cities in Chicago, November 1-3, 2016, to further explore opportunities in the smart city space. For more information on the U.S. government smart city initiatives or services offered by the ITA, please email the team at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow me @SmartCitySingh.