JONESBORO, Ark. – The World Trade Center Arkansas will host an inbound reverse trade mission with its partners, The Consul General of Mexico in Little Rock, and the World Trade Center Querétaro at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 18, at the Jonesboro Regional Chamber of Commerce, 1709 E. Nettleton Ave.
WTC Queretaro leaders are seeking Arkansas business partners, holding meetings in Northwest Arkansas, Little Rock and Jonesboro in an effort to recruit Arkansas companies to sell products or services to Queretaro.
The Mexican city, which also houses a branch of Arkansas State University, has more than 20 industrial parks, 45 research and development centers, and more than 800 global enterprises and universities.
There is no cost to attend the meeting, said Melvin Torres, director of Western Hemisphere Trade for the World Trade Center Arkansas. Diplomats and company representatives will explain and discuss how to start the export partner-matching process. It will last from 2-5 p.m.
“I think this is an opportunity for local business, especially agri-business, because more than a quarter of Arkansas exports go to Mexico,” Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin said. “They’re our No. 1 international partner.”
Torres said it is an honor that the Mexican representatives are coming to Arkansas, because they are not visiting any other state. Queretaro, with a population of 805,000, has been recognized as the safest city and best quality of life location in Mexico.
“It’s a testament to Arkansas’ economic attractiveness that foreign trade and diplomatic representatives are so deeply interested in our state’s products,” Torres said. “Usually, foreign trade officials visit our state to recruit buyers. This is a unique opportunity for Arkansas companies to take advantage of a market that is seeking them out.”
Much economic and higher education activity between Querétaro and Arkansas already exists, making the region a natural partner to grow business and explore educational opportunities with Arkansas companies and universities.
Carlos Uribe, chief operating officer of WTC Queretaro and Cancun, will join Torres on the visit to Jonesboro.
“This raises the opportunities of many young Mexicans and Americans to be able to actualize their knowledge and generate a more promising future for both countries that will lead our region and world,” Uribe said.
Interested Arkansas companies can attend meetings at the WTC Querétaro in Mexico during the World Trade Center Association’s 50th General Assembly in April 2019. STEP Grant funding might be available for eligible Arkansas small businesses concerns to offset costs.
press release – Bill Campbell, City of Jonesboro