In 2011, the State Department placed great emphasis on the "future of U.S. economic growth increasingly relying on our ability to compete and win overseas." Given the Department's far-reaching work overseas, employees were asked to look at ways to use the Department’s platforms and relationships abroad to strengthen the relationship between diplomacy and economics. In other words, the Department was asked to answer the question of what we can do for business.
As a piece of this broader agenda, senior officials from U.S. business support organizations around the world participated in a two-day conference hosted by the State Department in Washington, DC on February 21-22, 2012. The conference highlights how the U.S. Government can help promote U.S. businesses abroad, increase U.S. exports, attract new investment to the United States, and create American jobs. High-level representatives from the White House, Departments of Commerce and Treasury, the Export-Import Bank, OPIC, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, and U.S. business executives also participated in the conference.
Day one included remarks, as well as panel discussions and small group meetings on export promotion, increasing investment in the U.S., and key policy topics of interest to businesses abroad.
Day two of the conference included regional breakout sessions, hosted by the State Department’s regional assistant secretaries.