WASHINGTON, March 10, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, the President of the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) Mesa, Arizona Mayor Scott Smith, announced the appointment of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti to Chair a new "Trade in the Americas Task Force" within the Conference. The appointment was made prior to Mayor Garcetti's recent visit to Mexico and his first international trip.
In an appointment letter to Mayor Garcetti, USCM President Scott Smith said, "To be most effective, this task force needs a leader with your qualities from a city like Los Angeles. Combined with the global profile and diversity of Los Angeles, your early commitment to international economic engagement -- starting in Mexico -- and efforts to collaborate with regional leaders on trade and foreign investment, you will make an excellent leader and spokesperson on this issue for all mayors."
"Creating jobs is my top priority in Los Angeles, and since we're the nation's gateway to Asia and Latin America, and home to the nation's busiest seaport and destination and arrival airport, we are uniquely positioned in terms of international trade," said Mayor Eric Garcetti. "I am honored for this appointment and look forward to advancing international trade in ways that create jobs right here in the U.S.A."
The chair of the Task Force will decide the scope and direction of the task force, attended by mayors from around the country, and become the primary way that U.S. mayors can advance action on programs, regulations, and investments needed in the areas of trade and global economic development. For example, the task force can serve to advocate the collective views of mayors within the U.S.-Mexico High Level Economic Dialogue, implementation of the Look South Initiative of the Obama Administration, and similar efforts.
Over the past year under Smith's leadership as USCM President, he has placed a strong focus on trade and made promoting the growth of U.S. cities a central priority, by expanding commercial relationships with counterparts in Mexico, Canada, and throughout Latin America. Smith spearheaded the passage of a Conference policy resolution to set objectives for a "Trade in the Americas" agenda.
And at the Winter Meeting in January, Conference leaders featured Mexican Ambassador Eduardo Medina-Mora and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker to highlight the new "Look South" initiative.
The Conference also recently signed formal partnership agreements between USCM and associations of mayors in both Mexico (Federation of Mexican Municipalities/FENAMM) and Brazil (the Brazilian Association of Mayors/ FNP), to strengthen direct relationships between mayors in the U.S. and Latin America.
Tom Cochran, CEO and Executive Director of The Conference said, "we are pleased LA Mayor Eric Garcetti will be leading our efforts as we follow through on the signed memorandum of understanding and the body of work and success we will have with our partner mayoral organizations, FENAMM in Mexico and FNP in Brazil."
Through the new Trade in the Americas Task Force, the nation's mayors will be able to build on their recent efforts and enhance the work already taking place in other USCM Committees including: international affairs, exports, transportation, manufacturing, workforce, and metro economies.
SOURCE The U.S. Conference of Mayors