Port Of Hueneme Celebrates World Trade Week On National Maritime Day

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Proclamation from President Obama presented By the US Department of Commerce

Port Aerial
Events such as World Trade Week here at the Port today, helps create awareness of the strategic opportunities available to all of us to increase trade and diverse exchanges for the mutual benefit of the communities our port serves

Just back from the Trade Mission, the Port of Hueneme and its strategic economic development partners at California Lutheran University, California State University Channel Islands, the Economic Development Collaborative of Ventura County (EDC-VC), District Export Council of Southern California, the Center for International Trade Development and the Valley International Trade Association (VITA), celebrate World Trade Center Week on National Maritime Day. As a World Trade Center licensee, the Port in concert with our strong team of stakeholders is hosting a special event as part of its overall initiative to advance the businesses of Ventura County and expand their reach to the global market place.    

Port Commission President, Mary Anne Rooney, commented that, “Events such as World Trade Week here at the Port today, helps create awareness of the strategic opportunities available to all of us to increase trade and diverse exchanges for the mutual benefit of the communities our port serves.”

Specifically our program revolves around the President’s “Look South Initiative.” The Port received a Proclamation from the Obama Administration presented Richard Swanson, Regional Director for the Pacific South, U.S. Department of Commerce.

Richard Swanson with the U.S. Department of Commerce, said ”On behalf of the United States Department of Commerce and Secretary Penny Pritzker we would like to honor the local trade community and the Port of Hueneme for their efforts in promoting trade and investment with the U.S. and helping further the President’s ‘Look South’ initiative. The President of the United States proclaims that May 18 through the 24th shall be World Trade Week and we feel there is no better reflection of World Trade Week than here today at the Port Thursday May 22nd.”

The Port also took the opportunity to report out on its Look South Trade Mission to Latin American focusing on the nation’s free trade agreements with Chile and Peru. President of the Board Mary Anne Rooney and Dick Vega, Trade Commissioner of Ecuador announced the planned Sister Port Agreement with the Port of Bolivar, Ecuador.

Ecuador’s Consul General Diego Jaramillo attending with his Trade Commissioner Dick Vega also indicated his strong support of the President’s ‘Look South’ initiative, indicating that events like this, "Help develop more opportunities for our local businesses both big and small, to work with U.S. companies in growing both our economies.”

One highlight of the program included a business theme in which Ventura County’s vibrant export, import and fertilizer trade companies showcased their success stories in global trade. Presentations were delivered by Chiquita, Del Monte, Deckers, Wallenius Wilhelmsen, and Yara North America where the spoke to the importance of international business specific to their operations.

Consuls General from the European Union named below also participated as special guests:

  •     Mr. Diego Jaramillo, Consul General of Ecuador
  •     Ambassador Rudi Veestraetan, Consul General of Belgium
  •     Dr. Bernd Fischer, Consul General of Germany
  •     Mr. Eugene Chivu, Consul General of Romania
  •     Mr. Michal Sedlacek, Consul General of the Czech Republic
  •     Mr. Marin Dimitrov, Consul General of Bulgaria
  •     Ms. Bernadette Green, British Deputy Consul General

Ventura County is home to 950 manufacturing firms generating nearly 30,000 jobs, paying the fourth highest wages in the nation. Our County’s higher density of manufacturing puts us in the top 10% of the largest 100 urban areas in the nation. Driven by its strong connections to the global economy, Ventura County continues to excel in key industries such as manufacturing, finance and agriculture.

Bruce Stenslie, Executive Director of the Economic Development Collaborative of Ventura County, commented, “We are also a leader in the high paying finance industry, benefiting from the 2nd highest concentration of jobs among all California counties. Demonstrating the diversity of our industry base, Ventura County is a leading agricultural producer, generating over $2 billion to the local economy annually.”

The event proved most successful with close to 80 people in attendance.

“We have made so much progress, yet have much more work ahead of us. With only 4% of the County’s firms in the export business, events like this are so important to augmenting our footprint in the global marketplace. Stakeholder engagement and promotion of our role with the World Trade Center promises to serve as a catalyst to leverage significant opportunities for our region and help our business take greater advantage of international trade,” said Kristin Decas, CEO and Port Director.

The Port of Hueneme is one of the most productive and efficient commercial trade gateways for niche cargo on the West Coast. The Port is governed by 5 locally elected Port Commissioners. The Port moves $8 billion in goods each year and consistently ranks among the top ten U.S. ports for autos and fresh produce. Port operations support the community by bringing $1.1 billion in economic activity and creating 10,400 trade-related jobs. Trade through The Port generates more than $69 million in annual state and local taxes, which fund vital community services.

We Make Cargo Move

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Will Berg
Port of Hueneme
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