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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Business Overseas


The Department of State's Role: Facilitating Business Overseas
Released by the Office of Commercial and Business Affairs
January 28, 2001

The Office of Commercial and Business Affairs (CBA) at the Department of State is a service center for State officials here and overseas and for its principal clients -- American businesses, large and small. The Office of Commercial and Business Affairs promotes:

  • Advocacy on behalf of U.S. companies with commercial opportunities or concerns about economic and trade policies;
  • Integration of business perspectives into the Department's foreign policy and commercial diplomacy; and,
  • Representation of the Department's agenda to the American business community and public at large

The U.S. Government Commercial Advocacy Guidelines provide assistance in determining whether and to what extent U.S. Government support is appropriate. The Advocacy Questionnaire is also included.

Established in 1999, the Department of State's Award for Corporate Excellence emphasizes the important role U.S. businesses can play abroad as good corporate citizens by recognizing exemplary conduct and corporate social responsibility. CBA oversees the management of this prestigious award.

The annual Cobb Award recognizes an ambassador and non-ambassador who are the most innovative and successful in developing trade and promoting exports for the United States.

Success stories are a collection of specific actions taken by U.S. foreign affairs and trade promotion agencies to assist American companies, to promote open markets, to safeguard investments and intellectual property rights, and to endorse fair and equal treatment in international trade.  


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