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Commercial and Business Affairs

Helps U.S. businesses and entrepreneurs pursue opportunities abroad and promotes responsible business conduct.

The Office of Commercial and Business Affairs (CBA) is the State Department’s gateway for American businesses overseas. Our mission is to employ U.S. government resources to assist and advocate for U.S. business interests abroad, recognize strong performance through the Award for Corporate Excellence, promote a vibrant ecosystem for entrepreneurship and innovation, and ensure U.S. private sector concerns are integrated into our foreign and economic policy.

International Communications and Information Policy

Digital Economy issues are now managed by the new Bureau of Cyberspace and Digital Policy

Economic Policy Analysis and Public Diplomacy

Leads the Bureau’s strategic planning, media engagement, and outreach on economic and business affairs, as well as manages the U.S. role in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

The Office of Economic Policy Analysis and Public Diplomacy leads the bureau’s strategic planning, support for economic officers’ development, media engagement, and outreach on U.S. economic and business affairs.  We explain how smart economic policy expands opportunities for Americans and fosters a more prosperous and secure future.  We also lead U.S. policy in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to harmonize best economic practices across nations.

Women’s Economic Empowerment

“Providing Opportunities for Women’s Economic Rise,” or POWER, is a multi-tiered program that connects the U.S. private sector with U.S. government initiatives overseas to promote women’s economic empowerment.   

In 2019, the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs launched a new State Department initiative to promote women’s economic empowerment called POWER – “Providing Opportunities for Women’s Economic Rise.”  Through POWER, we are engaging U.S. women business leaders and those abroad to develop partnerships in emerging markets that help them explore new opportunities and implement competitive strategies in key sectors.  POWER enables the State Department and private sector to work together to establish professional networks and business environments focused on promoting women’s economic empowerment in a global context. These connections facilitate business development, trade, and investment among U.S. women business leaders and those abroad.  POWER contributes to the overall advancement of U.S. economic interests.

International Finance and Development

Protects U.S. national security while promoting balanced investment relationships, fosters sustainable development, and supports international financial stability to create prosperity and growth in the United States and abroad.

The International Finance and Development (IFD) Division leads the Bureau’s engagement in development finance, investment, and macroeconomic affairs, in cooperation with other U.S. government agencies.  We promote prosperity at home and abroad by encouraging sound macroeconomic and fiscal policy, sustainable development in accordance with international standards, private sector growth, good governance, and transparency.

We support foreign investment in the United States and work to develop new markets and stable, transparent investment climates overseas.  IFD engages in regional and multilateral fora to promote economic policies that support U.S. economic and foreign policy interests. Learn more about EB’s commitment to transparency, governance, and anti-corruption and responsible business conduct.

Counter Threat Finance and Sanctions

Develops and implements sanctions and counter-threat finance policies to counter risks to national security posed by particular activities, groups, and countries.

The Counter Threat Finance and Sanctions division (TFS) is responsible for developing and implementing sanctions to counter threats to national security posed by particular activities, terrorist groups and countries. TFS advises the Secretary on economic sanctions strategies to achieve U.S. foreign policy objectives and works with other agencies to enact such strategies. TFS builds international support for the implementation of economic sanctions, provides foreign policy guidance to the Department of Treasury and Department of Commerce on sanctions implementation, and engages with Congress on legislation that advances U.S. foreign policy goals in these areas.  TFS maintains and enforces sanctions to maximize their economic impact on their targets and minimize the damage to U.S. economic interests.  We also work to remove economic sanctions when appropriate to reward and incentivize improved behavior or demonstrate U.S. support for newly established democratic governments.  In addition, TFS conducts outreach on sanctions to a wide range of interested parties including foreign governments, the private sector, and NGOs.  Further, TFS oversees the Department’s international engagement on anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing (AML/CFT) issues, including through the Financial Action Task Force.

Trade Policy and Negotiations

Represents the State Department in international trade and policy discussions and provides trade, agricultural, and intellectual property rights protection expertise on foreign policy issues.

International Trade Policy Advice and Issue Expertise 

The Trade Policy and Negotiations (TPN) division advances U.S. trade policy consistent with U.S. national security and foreign policy priorities. TPN Officers open markets for U.S. products and services overseas and strengthen our trade relationships around the world to benefit all Americans.  The TPN team partners with the U.S. Trade Representative, other federal agencies, the U.S. private sector, international organizations, foreign governments, and nongovernmental organizations to open new markets, resolve trade disputes, protect intellectual property rights, and promote agricultural and other innovation so American businesses succeed abroad, and our workers, farmers, and consumers enjoy the benefits of free and fair trade at home. TPN also cooperates with U.S. partners and allies and stakeholders from business, labor, and civil society to promote resilient critical supply chains, including through mechanisms such as the 2022 Supply Chain Ministerial, the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council , the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework and the COVID-19 Global Action Plan, among others. 

Transportation Affairs

Leads U.S. government efforts to ensure safe, secure, efficient aviation and maritime transportation networks worldwide.

Safe, secure, efficient, global transportation is vital to the U.S. economy.  The Office of Transportation Policy (TRA/OTP) works to increase global capacity and safeguard the commercial aviation and maritime sectors.  Working with U.S. and foreign partners, TRA/OTP promotes adherence to the highest international standards to enhance the safety and security of the global transportation system.  The Office of Aviation Negotiations (TRA/AN) expands U.S. access to air services markets around the world, and works to ensure a level playing field for U.S. carriers by enforcing our agreements with foreign governments, including over 125 Open Skies partners.

Innovation Policy

The EB Innovation Roundtables are a series of multi-sectoral discussions that connect emerging technologies and innovations with U.S. government officials to better understand how the U.S. government can partner with the U.S. private sector to promote national security and economic interests.

In 2018, the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs began holding a series of Innovation Roundtable meetings on emerging technology and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) issues to promote U.S. economic interests and development through increased engagement and cooperation with U.S. private sector entities that operate domestically and abroad.  The Innovation Roundtable series enables the State Department and private sector entities to work together to establish professional networks and business environments focused on promoting the U.S. first mover advantage in emerging technology sectors such as block chain, digital payments, artificial intelligence, and cyber security.  These connections facilitate business development, trade, investment, and greater unity of purpose among American business leaders seeking to ensure that the United States continues to remain at the leading edge of global technology innovation.

U.S. Department of State

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