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Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo Announces 2024 Event Schedule to Expand Opportunities for Diverse U.S. Exporters

Jan 12, 2024

Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo Announces 2024 Event Schedule to Expand Opportunities for Diverse U.S. Exporters
Fri, 01/12/2024 – 17:03

Export and investment promotion


Friday, January 12, 2024

Office of Public Affairs


U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo today announced a nationwide schedule of key export promotion events—ranging from in-person local events to trade missions around the world—to advance export opportunities for diverse businesses.

These programs are made available to U.S. businesses through Commerce’s International Trade Administration (ITA) and its export promotion arm, the U.S. Commercial Service as part of its Global Diversity Export Initiative (GDEI). The GDEI 2024 event schedule will connect diverse U.S. businesses across the nation to impactful opportunities in international trade across to create jobs.

“We’re excited to offer this series of events to encourage diverse businesses across America to take advantage of the benefits that come from exporting,” said Secretary Raimondo. “Companies that export earn on average higher revenues, create more jobs, and pay better wages. By improving access to export education and resources for U.S. businesses in underserved communities, we can boost the knowledge base and pool of exporters, helping to ensure equitable economic growth for American workers and families.”

With almost 272,000 U.S. small and medium-sized businesses exporting, the limited number of companies from underserved communities participating in international trade is in stark contrast with the total universe of exporters. According to the most recent Census data (2021), from a sample of approximately 146,000 firms that export, 15% are women-owned; 6% are Hispanic-owned; 6% are Veteran-owned; and 1% are Black or African American-owned firms. Through these events, the Department of Commerce seeks to continue to scale the next generation of innovation, maintain global competitiveness, and ensure that more diverse businesses benefit from harnessing the potential of exports.

In line with the Biden-Harris Administration’s National Export Strategy chapter on bolstering export assistance for small businesses and underserved communities, the GDEI has increased awareness and participation of diverse companies in the export ecosystem. The GDEI 2024 Events Schedule has a wide variety of events available to diverse U.S. businesses from rural and urban communities. Through these events, the GDEI aims to continue broadening access to opportunities and resources for diverse businesses seeking global expansion through exports.

In 2024, ITA will lead GDEI trade missions across the globe, including an education trade mission to India and a women’s business conference and trade mission to Latin America, a trade mission and business development forum to Europe/Eurasia, and a trade mission to Saudi Arabia.    

Planned GDEI Trade Missions in 2024:

GDEI Education Trade Mission to South India | February 12-20
GDEI Trade Mission to Panama, Costa Rica, and Colombia | March 10-15
Trade Winds Europe/Eurasia | Istanbul, Türkiye | May 9 -17
GDEI Trade Mission to Saudi Arabia | December 8 – 9
In addition, throughout 2024, ITA will continue its widely acclaimed Building Bridges to Global Markets event series. Building Bridges to Global Markets brings in-person exporting expertise to businesses in underserved communities. These programs will address the most common obstacles facing diverse businesses seeking international sales growth including access to capital, managing risk, securing market intelligence, and identifying reputable overseas customers. 

Adding to the successful series of 17 Building Bridges to Global Markets events held nationwide in 2022 and 2023, the ITA will work with GDEI partners to bring valuable exporting resources and knowledge to even more underserved rural and urban communities across the country. ITA holds Strategic Partnerships with a number of national organizations, some of which include the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association, Asian American Chamber of Commerce, Lendistry, National Black Chamber of Commerce, National Business League, National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development, National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, National Minority Supplier Development Council, National Veteran Institute for Procurement, Organization of Women in International Trade, The 22 Fund Management, The WMarketplace, U.S. Black Chambers, U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and U.S. Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce.

Furthermore, Building Bridges to Global Markets has partnered with national and community organizations across the country to offer programs at the following events in 2024: 

Reservation Economic Summit | Las Vegas, NV | March 11-14
Detroit Regional LGBT Chamber Spring Summit | Detroit, MI | April 18
U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Legislative Summit | Washington, DC | April 22-24
USPAACC CelebrAsian Conference | Alpharetta, GA | May 29-31
Building Bridges for Women in Global Trade | Los Angeles, CA | June 13
National Black Business Conference | Atlanta, GA | August 22-24
Rural Building Bridges at the Mississippi Delta | Greensville, MS | September
National Veteran Matchmaking Conference | Detroit, MI | November 8-9
Additional exciting event opportunities will be added to the 2024 schedule throughout the year. Please visit the GDEI web page for updated event information, sign up for the GDEI monthly newsletter and/or connect with your local U.S. Commercial Service office for assistance.


About the International Trade Administration

The International Trade Administration (ITA) at the U.S. Department of Commerce is the premier government resource for American companies competing in the global marketplace. Operating in more than 100 U.S. locations and 80 markets worldwide, ITA promotes trade and investment, assists U.S. businesses and workers to export and expand globally, and ensures fair trade and compliance by enforcing U.S. trade laws and agreements. For more information on ITA, visit www.trade.gov/export-solutions.

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International Trade Administration


Trade Mission

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