LOS ANGELES, Calif. /California Newswire/ — Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced the launch of the Los Angeles Regional Export Council (LARExC) on Monday, a public-private partnership between government, business, and educational institutions that will coordinate export services in the Los Angeles region.
“We in Los Angeles are not waiting for Washington to create jobs,” said Mayor Villaraigosa. “We are launching the Los Angeles Regional Export Council to help local businesses find the export assistance they need to grow their businesses and create new jobs.”
The Export Council will streamline the region’s export support services and help LA businesses reach international markets where 95 percent of the world’s consumers will soon be located. Research indicates that every $1 billion in exports creates 5,500 jobs.
This public-private partnership will streamline the region’s export support systems by creating a single entry point for businesses interested in selling goods and services abroad. It will create a one-stop regional export web resource to connect small- and medium-sized businesses to the right export services. The Export Council will focus on firms that are already exporting, or have the capacity to start exporting, and will target a dozen key growth industries– everything from fashion apparel to food processing to clean tech.
The Export Council is a collaboration of regional export service organizations including seven key partners: The Los Angeles Mayor’s Office, the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, the Centers for International Trade Development (CITD), the USC Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER), the UCLA Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER), the Port of Los Angeles, and Los Angeles World Airports.
The announcement of the Export Council took place at CR&A Custom Banner, a local company which currently does limited export business to Latin America and the Middle East. The Council will help companies like CR&A expand their international exports business and take advantage of growing markets abroad.
During his remarks on Monday, Mayor Villaraigosa recognized the Brookings Institution and its Metropolitan Export Initiative for understanding that the export promotion goals articulated by President Obama on the national level can only be achieved if metro economies like Los Angeles make a concerted effort to pursue export promotion locally.
“As we continue to face a weak economy, regional leaders have to leverage their key assets and develop strategies to better engage in the global marketplace if they want to succeed in creating jobs in the short term and transform their economies for the long term,” said Amy Liu, Co-Director and Senior Fellow, the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution. “This economic initiative will put Los Angeles and Southern California on that path to a more prosperous future.”
The Export Council is comprised of several programs to assist businesses with their export activities. The “MBA Export Champions” program connects local MBA students from the UCLA Anderson School of Management and USC Marshall School of Business with LA businesses to help export-ready firms in LA develop sound business plans and reach foreign markets. This is one of the programs made possible by a $320,000 grant from the Small Business Administration.
The Export Council will also work with groups like the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), a Korean trade group, to help train local businesses to take advantage of and understand free trade agreements.
The LA Regional Export Council is a core component of Mayor Villaraigosa’s “partnering for economic growth” strategy.
Partnering for economic growth is one of the five steps that Mayor Villaraigosa is taking to put people to work. The five steps are: (1) reforming LA’s business tax; (2) reducing red tape; (3) partnering for economic growth; (4) modernizing LAX and the Port of Los Angeles; and (5) building a 21st century rail network.
The City is making major investments in LAX and the Port of Los Angeles to ensure that we maintain our edge as a hub of international
In December, the Mayor departs on a trade mission where Port and LAWA executives will showcase LA’s expanded capacity and opportunities for Asian exporters to grow their operations in Los Angeles with manufacturing space and increased movement of goods. During the trade mission, dozens of LA-based companies will showcase their goods and services to potential Asian investors and customers.
“During our upcoming trade mission we will help Los Angeles-based companies grow here at home by expanding their businesses in Asia,” said Mayor Villaraigosa. “There is a growing market around the globe and we intend to help Los Angeles take advantage of it.”