The U.S. Department of State’s Global Entrepreneurship Program (GEP) will lead a delegation of American entrepreneurs and early-stage investors to Turkey May 29 to June 2. The delegation will be led by the State Department’s Special Representative for Commercial & Business Affairs, Lorraine Hariton. In Istanbul, delegates will judge the “Showcase of the Best of the Best of Turkey’s Entrepreneurs,” a business plan competition featuring 32 Turkish start-ups. Delegates will also participate in other events and meetings with Turkish entrepreneurs and investors.
The U.S. delegation and business plan competition are part of GEP-Turkey, which is a joint effort between the U.S. Department of State, the Economic Policy Research Foundation of Turkey (TEPAV), and the Union of Turkish Chambers of Commerce (TOBB). The objective of GEP-Turkey is to promote the growth of entrepreneurship in Turkey by working with partners from the private sector, civil society, and the government.
As Secretary Clinton has said, "We are promoting entrepreneurship, because new businesses mean more jobs, faster growth, and greater innovation. We are spearheading new initiatives to bring together government officials, leaders from the private sector, and young entrepreneurs who have the vision and drive to succeed in the 21st century global economy."
Secretary Clinton announced the creation of the Global Entrepreneurship Program at the Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship, held in Washington, D.C., in 2010. Previous delegations led by the Global Entrepreneurship Program have connected American investors with entrepreneurs in Algeria, Egypt, Indonesia, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, and Tunisia.