World Trade Week Chair's Message
The strategic location of Southern California as a global trade hub cannot be overstated. Handling more than 390 billion dollars in two-way trade – whether through exporting agricultural, manufactured goods, medical equipment and high value-added products or importing products for consumers or production lines – Southern California is key in linking global markets. It is this fact that makes the theme of the 91st Annual World Trade Week (WTW), “Southern California – The Hub of Global Trade,” so timely and appropriate.
World Trade Week has been a time-honored tradition in the Southern California business community for more than 90 years. I am honored to serve as chairman of the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce World Trade Week in its 91st year.
The importance of WTW is demonstrated through a month-long celebration in May, which consists of many events that provide the opportunity for members of the business community to discuss and learn about the importance of international trade to the Southern California economy. The L.A. Area Chamber has been the leader in ensuring the success of this event for its entire history, which commences with the WTW Kickoff Breakfast that is scheduled for May 4, 2017.
There are many companies that depend on Southern California to support their global supply chains, resulting in a substantial positive economic impact to our local economy. In addition, these organizations have made significant capital investments in local infrastructure to our benefit to serve these global markets.
Southern California is also unique in relation to its world trading partners with the multitude and variety of transportation modes engaged in this trade. Whether through our local seaport or international airport, ranked No. 1 and No. 5 respectively in the United States, to the cluster of warehouses and distribution centers in the Inland Empire all connected by a local drayage community, our infrastructure ensures global goods move efficiently within our borders. Southern California is also the gateway to the most robust intercontinental rail infrastructure in the world for freight movement. We truly have it covered whether it moves by sea, water, air, land or the ever-expanding electronic highway. All of these businesses create in excess of 360,000 jobs in many different sectors of our local communities.
I look forward to meeting you at one of the many events that will be held during the celebratory month of World Trade Week.
2017 World Trade Week Chair
Vice President, West Coast Operations