U.S. Ambassadors from ASEAN Region hosted by WTC Philadelphia and Select Greater Philadelphia
A member of the Senior Foreign Service, with tours of duty in major U.S. embassies around the world, Ambassador Allen also served as U.S. Department of Commerce Deputy Assistant Secretary for Asia and later China, as well as being posted at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. Ambassador Osius served at posts in India, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines. (See attached bios).
Over 33 international companies and organizations attended, representing a broad cross section of the region’s major exporting sectors, including health, aviation, food export and higher education.
The Ambassadors’ visit is part of a U.S. tour and an opportunity to expand trade with one of the most rapidly growing regions in the world and to further discussion on the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) trade agreement. Both Ambassadors spoke compellingly on TPP, noting that TPP countries currently account for 40% of global trade, with the agreement eliminating customs duties on exports for major sectors in the region. (See attached TPP info from US Department of Commerce and USDA).
The discussion centered on significant opportunities for area businesses and institutions in various categories including: Health, Higher Education, Energy and Suppliers/Precision Manufacturing, Aviation/Helicopters, Smart Cities Technology and Entrepreneurship. According to Ambassador Allen, Brunei has extensive off-shore oil and gas drilling operations that require helicopter support and represent an opportunity for our energy suppliers and aviation sector. Over 19,000 students from Vietnam are currently enrolled in U.S. institutions of higher learning, with Ambassador Osius underscoring the significant opportunity for the U.S. to build important commercial and cultural ties, citing a recent survey where over 92% of respondents selected the United States as Vietnam’s favored country.
Philadelphia’s legendary Bassetts Ice Cream, currently exports ice cream to China, and President Michael Strange has interest in expanding to additional markets like Vietnam.
According to Linda Conlin, President of the World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia, “At the World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia, we seek to offer our members timely information and important international connections to accelerate their global growth. At this time of national and local debate on trade, these senior diplomats identified specific export opportunities in their countries and articulated concrete TPP benefits to area companies that will increase business and economic growth and jobs for our communities.”
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