U.S. Dept. of Interior Conference to Feature Industry Session on Transfer of U.S. Military Forces to Guam

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The U.S. Department of the Interior's 4th Conference on Business Opportunities in the Islands will include a special session for companies interested in business opportunities associated with U.S. military developments on Guam. The re-basing of U.S. forces on Guam, including the transfer of 9,000 U.S. Marines and 8,000 of their dependents, will create a wide variety of opportunities throughout the region. The U.S. Navy's Joint Guam Program Office will sponsor the industry session as part of the October 8-9 conference at the Hyatt Regency Guam.

The U.S. Department of the Interior's 4th Conference on Business Opportunities in the Islands will include a special session for companies interested in business opportunities associated with U.S. military developments on Guam.

The U.S. Navy's Joint Guam Program Office will sponsor the industry session as part of the October 8-9 conference at the Hyatt Regency Guam.

The conference is the latest in a series of events hosted by the U.S. Interior Department aimed at stimulating private sector-led economic development in the U.S.-affiliated insular areas. The department has hosted three previous conferences and led three Business Opportunities Missions to five jurisdictions over the last four years.

The missions and the conferences were designed to put business opportunities in the insular areas "on the map" for U.S. mainland business and investment communities, aggressively facilitate the local development of business opportunities, and provide venues where business people from both the mainland United States, six Pacific jurisdictions, and the Pacific Rim can meet, forge partnerships, and do business.

The Joint Guam Program Office and the Naval Facilities Engineering Command are holding a series of industry forums to develop open communication between the federal government and businesses regarding the proposed transfer of military personnel and construction program on Guam.

The objectives include sharing preliminary information and current actions, receiving and considering industry comments and suggestions, and integrating findings into the buildup strategy for efficient delivery of the required infrastructure.

The re-basing of U.S. forces on Guam, including the transfer of 9,000 U.S. Marines and 8,000 of their dependents, will create a wide variety of opportunities throughout the region, both from projects directly related to the buildup and from the secondary effects of a large-scale increase in the regional population, and the accompanying demands for products and services. Many of these other opportunities will be explored during the conference, which also covers tourism, specialty products, and a range of other opportunities.

In addition to Major General David Bice, USMC (ret)., who is the executive director of the Joint Guam Program Office, the conference will feature the leaders of six Pacific jurisdictions, as well as industry experts from around the region and the world. Other featured speakers include Tony Neil, executive director of the Pacific Power Association, Scott Simpson, director of the Defense Commissary Agency Western Region, and Mark Erwin, president and CEO of Continental-Micronesia.

The U.S. Secretary of the Interior has administrative responsibility for coordinating federal policy in the territories of American Samoa, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. The Secretary also is responsible for administering and overseeing financial and technical assistance provided to the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau.

Registration information for the 2007 Conference on Business Opportunities in the Islands is online at http://www.businessopportunitiesconference.com. Registrations will be accepted until October 3, 2007.

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