Port of Hueneme Trade Delegation Explores Business Opportunities in Mexico

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Port of Hueneme Establishes Sister Port Relationship with Port of Ensenada

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Historic sister port signing ceremony between the Port of Hueneme, CA and the Port of Ensenada, Mexico.

The sister port relationship established with the Port of Ensenada promises to grow a short sea shipping route between Hueneme and Ensenada.

The Ports of Hueneme, CA and Ensenada, Mexico made history today between their two ports, embarking on a commitment to work together and develop a short sea shipping trade program.

This exceptional initiative came as part of a Port of Hueneme trade delegation that visited Mexico on October 15-16, 2015 to explore business opportunities in Baja California.

Today opened with a robust discussion at a business round table with representatives from both the United States and Mexico. High-level officials included Port of Hueneme Board of Harbor Commissioners President Jess Herrera; Port of Hueneme CEO and Director Kristin Decas; CEO of Port of Ensenada Hector Bautista; Director General of Administration for Mexican Ports Fernando Gamboa Rosas; Secretary of Economic Development of Baja California Carlo Humberto Bonfante; Undersecretary for Investment Promotion and Business Retention Jose Lopez Castellanos; Consul General Mexico Ana Bernice Diaz Ceballos Parada; and US Consulate General of Tijuana Jason Vorderstrasse. In addition, the right players were in the room from all levels of the supply chain, including shippers, carriers, truckers, railroad, captains of port, permitting agents and regulators, and produce distributors. Economists, engineers, and policy makers also weighed in.

This gathering represents a unique strategy to trade development by laying out a viable roadmap for success. Customer visits to both ports are already in the works and the real work is taking shape. “In Mexico we are trying to move forward to increase employment, to educate the people, to create a better level of life for everyone. I hope this meeting will help create a better place to live in both Ventura County and the municipality of Ensenada," said Fernando Gamboa Rosas.

At the newly constructed marine park, framed by stellar views of Ensenada's commercial seaport, the two Ports celebrated the ceremonial signing of a sister port agreement. Jess Herrera shared, “Today the Port of Hueneme participated in an extraordinary and important event at the Port of Ensenada, Mexico. Co-sponsored by the Port of Hueneme and the Association of Ensenada Ports, a sister Port Memorandum of Understanding was signed by myself and Fernando Gamboa Rosas, Director General of Administration for Mexican Ports.”

“The sister port relationship established with the Port of Ensenada promises to grow a short sea shipping route between Hueneme and Ensenada. It aligns with the objectives of the Port’s 2020 Strategic Plan as well as with the Port of Ensenada’s mission,” said Kristin Decas. “We look forward to continuing to work with Ensenada to develop an actionable plan to build a sustainable trade corridor.”

Not only is agriculture a natural connection for commerce between the two regions, manufacturing plays a key role as well. With some 900 manufacturers in Ventura County (representing 26% of the county’s GDP) and 1,200 manufacturers in Baja California, opening up the sea trade gateway between the two ports will serve as a catalyst for jobs in automotive, manufacturing, and perishable commodities sectors.

Berenice Diaz Ceballos noted, “This trade mission was an extraordinary opportunity to enhance cooperation and deepen our trade. I am very proud to be part of this effort, the sistering of the Ports of Ensenada and Hueneme.”

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Will Berg
Port of Hueneme
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