Peru Expected To Support Miamis Ftaa Bid
Forty-five Miami-Dade executives are headed for Peru, where it is expected that President Alejandro Toledo today (8/25) will endorse Miami as the preferred site for the secretariat of the Free Trade Area of the Americas.
They were expected to join the business development mission to Lima headed by Gov. Jeb Bush and sponsored in part by Florida FTAA – which is working to bring the secretariat to Miami if the Western Hemisphere’s 34 nations sign a free-trade agreement.
Work on the agreement was triggered by a hemispheric summit at the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables nearly a decade ago. Meetings throughout the hemisphere have dealt with details of the complex accord.
Sixty-seven persons were expected to be on the mission, which began Wednesday (8/24) and is to conclude Friday.
Expected on the mission are Charles Cobb, chairman of Florida FTAA Inc.; Jorge Arrizurieta, president of Florida FTAA Inc.; Pam Dana, director of Florida’s Office of Trade, Tourism & Economic Development; George Foyo, president and CEO of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce; Charlotte Gallogly, president of World Trade Center Miami Inc.; Manny Gonzalez, executive director of Miami-Dade County’s Jay Malina International Trade Consortium; Eduardo Padron, president of Miami Dade College; and J. Antonio Villamil, chairman of the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors and CEO of the Washington Economics Group in Coral Gables.
"Peru is among Florida’s top 20 trade partners and offers a wealth of international business opportunities for companies in a variety of industries throughout the Sunshine State," Gov. Bush said.
While the governor’s office said the mission’s aim is to cultivate Florida’s $1.2 billion annual trade relationship with Peru, an announcement is expected at a press conference scheduled for today (8/25) that Peru will join other nations that have endorsed Miami as their preferred site for the secretariat.
Locations for a secretariat have been discussed – including Watson Island, minutes from downtown, and sites in Coconut Grove.