FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, August 31, 2009
CONTACT OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
Commerce Secretary Gary Locke to Participate in Americas Competitiveness Forum in Santiago, Chile
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke today announced he will participate in the third annual Americas Competitiveness Forum (ACF) September 27-29, 2009, in Santiago, Chile. The ACF brings together representatives from the public and private sectors to discuss ways to spark innovation, create jobs, and expand trade among the countries of the hemisphere. The U.S. Department of Commerce hosted the first two ACFs in Atlanta in 2007 and 2008.
“I am looking forward to traveling to Chile to participate in the third Americas Competitiveness Forum,” Locke said. “Exports have always been crucial to American prosperity, and they have assumed an even greater significance in the current economic climate.”
“In Santiago, I plan to engage representatives from throughout the hemisphere on the positive impact open markets have on job creation and growth, the delivery of transformative ideas and technology, and the spread of democracy and freedom. The Forum is a unique event, a hallmark of our economic and commercial engagement with the hemisphere.”
Secretary Locke is expected to be joined by the presidents of Brazil, Chile, Guatemala and the Dominican Republic, as well as ministers of trade and economy from throughout the region and senior representatives from business and academia. This year’s ACF will focus on energy and the environment, financing in times of crisis, supply chain strategies, entrepreneurship and workforce development.
The countries of the Americas represent a substantial market for U.S. exporters. In 2008, total U.S. merchandise exports to the Western Hemisphere reached $549.3 billion, or 42.6 percent of total U.S. exports.
For additional information about the ACF, please visit http://trade.gov/competitiveness/acf/ .