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Looking East: County Executive Baker To Lead Business Mission Trip to Korea and China

EDC Account Assistant LeSha Jean Francois checking in business owner at Korea-China Information SessionLargo, MD - Last week, the Prince George's County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) hosted an information session for County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III's Business Mission Trip to Korea and China that will take place in April of this year.  Over 70 local business owners were in attendance and were briefed on the Korean and Chinese business culture and hottest sectors by experts from the EEC, the Maryland Department of Commerce, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea, KOTRA, the Embassy of the People's Republic of China, the U.S. Commercial Service, and the Greater Washington China Investment Center.  EDC President and CEO Jim Coleman is primed to help facilitate international trade. 
 
"We are tearing down walls and building bridges," said Coleman. "County Executive Baker knows the power of international trade and is at the forefront of establishing the relationships necessary to bring business back to Prince George's County. Today, we met with the top business leaders in the County who are all excited to export and import their goods and services to Korea and China. Over 90% of the world's buying power is outside of the United States and we are working hard to give our local companies an international platform."
 
County Executive Baker is well equipped to lead the business mission trip to the East, which will take place from April 17th to April 25th. In 2015, Mr. Baker led a successful trip to China in which business-to-business meetings were facilitated and resulted in partnerships formed between several companies in Prince George's County and China. In November, Mr. Baker led a group of 43 business leaders to Cuba to learn about the burgeoning business culture and establish relationships that will be in place when the trade embargo is lifted. The business owners in attendance saw the value in joining County Executive Baker for his business mission trip this Spring.
 
"Today's information session was absolutely outstanding. This mission will be a great opportunity for local business owners to grow their businesses in fast growing markets like Korea and China," said Bruce Lucas, owner of BML Properties Realty in Largo, MD.  "Having an opportunity to travel with a delegation led by County Executive Baker, and actually be connected to international businesses to do deals is a very important.  I am glad that the EDC is continuing to notify the business community about these types of important events."
 
The Maryland Department of Commerce strongly supports the Korea-China Business Mission Trip with resources that can decrease costs for business owners. Bradley Gillenwater, the Regional Manager and Investment Team Leader for East Asia shared just how bullish the State is in clearing the highway to profitability.
 
"The Maryland Department of Commerce provides two platforms available for Prince George's County companies to tap into," said Gillenwater. "These platforms help to offset the cost of participating in the trip to Korea and China. The U.S. Department of Commerce offers the 'Gold Key' service, which is a $700 offset. There is also a potential $6,000 offset which pertains to trade-show expenses. Every year we work with 125 Maryland companies who generate $80-$90 million in export sales and the Department of Commerce plays a huge role in helping close deals."
 
County Executive Baker will lead the Business Mission to Korea and China from April 17th to April 25th, 2017. The EDC has been allocated only 20 seats to offer business delegates to participate in this exciting Trade Mission. 
 
The total cost for each delegate to participate in County Executive Baker's Business Mission is $5,950 per person. Included in the package are: round-trip airfare, lodging, local transportation, meals, high-level receptions, bilingual guide and translator, processing of travel documents, processing of application to trade show, assistance with grant applications for MD Exports, assistance with Gold Key services, assistance with U.S. Department of Commerce Grant programs and guided cultural tours in Korea and China.
 
To secure a seat on the Business Mission to Korea and China or to find out more information, contact Nichelle Holmes, EDC Development Manager, at (301) 583-4650 or naholmes@co.pg.md.us.