National DEC and U.S. Chamber of Commerce Hosted 2016 International Trade Symposium

   The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National District Export Council successfully hosted the Fourth International Trade Symposium in Washington, DC. The Symposium was an annual event that is designed for small business exporters as an educational platform and engagement opportunity on key trade policy initiatives. This year the Symposium focused on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The Symposium was open to the public. In this year’s International Trade Symposium, attendees enjoyed listening to several aspects of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and joined discussions with the experts, industry representatives and with the officials at the key organizations in the U.S. and Vietnam government. Agenda of the Fourth International Trade Symposium was as in the following:   Welcome by Philip Pittsford – National DEC, Chair Emeritus Opening Remarks by Mr. Vu Le Thai Hoang, Minister Counselor and Chief Political Officer, Embassy of Vietnam to the U.S. Panel: The Arguments for the Trans-Pacific Partnership: A Sector Focus – Jim Fatheree (U.S. Chamber of Commerce) – moderator – Manufacturing: Ken Monahan (National Association of Manufacturers) – Financial Services and Insurance: Christine Bliss (Coalition of Service Industries) – Agriculture: Dave Salmonsen (American Farm Bureau Federation – AFBF)   Panel: Engaging Employees, Suppliers, Customers and Community on Trans-Pacific Partnership – Christopher Wenk (U.S. Chamber of Commerce) – moderator – Leslie Griffin (UPS) – Katie Hays (Caterpillar) – Susanne Stirling (California Chamber of Commerce) Keynote Remarks by Drew Quinn, Deputy Chief Negotiator for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, U.S. Trade Representative

National DEC Americas Outreach Initiative

NDEC Americas Outreach Initiative

National District Export Council launches the “Americas Outreach Initiative” program. This program is designed to counter the wave of protectionism regarding existing and proposed Free Trade Agreements, particularly for the Americas region. Main objective of this initiative is to build support for our trade policies and trade agreements specifically within our Hispanic community country-wide. NDEC considers the following actions as part of the Americas Outreach Initiative roadmap:

– Communication of the good news of how our SME exporters and their Latin American partners have benefited from these Free Trade Agreements, and

– Communication of our many trade agreement successes to the public and our large exporting community, but with the addition of new partners to develop export sales in these markets.

In order to pursue these goals, NDEC plans to organize and promote the organization through the DECs seminars, webinars and meetings focusing on TTP, success of exporters in utilization of the existing FTAs in Americas, as well as export opportunities in Latin America for the U.S. exporters. Key partners of the National DEC in this initiative will include the following organizations:

– U.S. Export Assistance Centers (USEAC),

– U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC),

– American Association Chambers of Commerce in Latin America and the Caribbean (AACCLA), and

– American Chambers of Commerce (AmCham).

For further information, please see the charter at NDEC_AmericasInitiative_7_1_16, or contact NDEC Steering Committee members Tom Norwalk ( and Ozkan Erdem (

National DEC 2016 – Annual Forum and International Trade Symposium

Save the Dates! September 22 – 23rd, 2016

Learn more about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), Its Importance to You and How You Can Be Engaged.


2016 National DEC Fourth Annual International Trade Symposium

September 22, 2016 – Thursday,  Washington, DC

Morning Session: International Trade Symposium. Organized in cooperation with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, to be held at the Vietnam House in D.C. Vietnam is a key player in TPP Negotiations.

Afternoon Session: Meetings on Capitol Hill with our respective elected officials and/or staff to discuss TPP.

Evening: Reception on Capitol Hill.

To register, go to Fourth Annual International Trade Symposium registration


2016 National DEC Forum

September 23, 2016 – Friday, Washington, DC

Organized in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Commerce, to be held at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center building. Come learn about the latest trends impacting exports and your DEC.

To register, go to 2016 National DEC Forum registration.

Join us at these important events. Details and an agenda will be available as we move closer to the event.

Is My Business Ready to Sell Globally?

By Tammy Marquez-Oldham

Director, OSBDCN Global Trade Center and the Portland Community College SBDC

President of NASBITE International

Oregon DEC


Making the decision to take a step into the global marketplace can be daunting and mysterious. So many rules and regulations. How do I know what I do not know? What if I do something wrong?

According to the Small Business Administration, only one percent of the United States’ 30 million businesses export their products. This percentage is lower than any other developed country in the world, yet, 95% of all customers are found outside the US. Wow, really?

What this means is that there is a relatively untapped market place available to those who are in a position to take advantage of the opportunity to sell globally. Especially for those who are able to expand into multiple countries. Only 58 percent of the companies that export goods do so to one country. If making the move into the global market is right for your business, there is the potential for improving your sales by going global.

Questions to Ask Before You Go Global

Is your company profitable and strong at home?

Key things to consider: operations, finance, management, marketing strategy, and staff. You must be confident with where your business stands on a day-to-day operating basis as well as trust that your staff is knowledgeable and capable of maintaining operations and expansion before you begin selling globally. Do you have management commitment? Is there an export plan? Does your product need modification?

Can you financially afford to go global?

Any time a business expands, the preexisting location may have to take on part of the burden of that expansion. What additional financial resources are needed? Will your company be able to not only survive but continue to thrive during this transition? Answering this question to the best of your abilities will give you a much-needed perspective on whether or not to proceed. An export plan will test your assumptions.

Should you expand your online presence instead?

Also considered in your export plan: is there enough of a demand for your products or services to warrant a physical expansion of your business globally or would you be better off improving your website to cater to global customers. This may be a good interim-step to test out the new global marketplace before considering more advanced stages of exporting.

Do Your Global Market Research

Global Market Research will help you identify which country, how many customers, what are the customer’s preferences, how much of a product similar to yours is being consumed and so much more. If you identify data which indicates a possible global market place there are resources able to confirm your assumptions.

How did the U.S. Free Trade Agreements Fare? A Comparative Study

US Free Trade Agreements

By Dr. Andreas Udbye

University of Puget Sound, Seattle, WA

Washington State DEC

As of 2015, the United States has Free Trade Agreements (“FTA’s”) with twenty partner countries. The main purpose of these agreements is to promote bilateral trade in the form of exports and imports. Their success can be gauged by measuring whether the FTA’s boosted trade at a higher rate than that with comparable non-FTA countries. This paper investigates whether the exports and imports between the U.S. and the twenty partner countries showed higher growth rates after the implementation of the FTA’s, and whether the growth rates were individually and collectively higher than compared to a control group consisting of 82 non-FTA trading partners. The measuring tool is Compound Annual Growth Rates (CAGR). Simpler than an econometric model based on gravity theory, and more accurate than comparing average growth rates, the CAGR is a suitable comparison measure. Older studies investigating international FTA’s have used versions of the gravity model to show significant increases in bilateral trade following the agreements. Unlike this report, none of those studies focused solely on the FTA’s that the U.S. has entered into over the past twenty years.

Compared to the control group, our analysis shows a positive effect of the FTA’s on U.S. exports, but a slightly negative effect on imports. Some of the FTA’s are only a few years old, and a complex global macroeconomic scene over the past ten years makes it harder to generalize. Each country has a different economic story to tell. However, from a trade policy standpoint it may appear that the FTA’s have the intended, incrementally positive effect on U.S. exports. While FTA’s may have significant positive or negative effects on specific sectors and industries, they do not appear to cause dramatic improvements in bilateral trade. In the conclusion of the paper we offer some possible reasons for the FTA’s lackluster performance.

Free Trade Agreement paper