Last Thursday, we hosted a summit of metro-Atlanta’s bi-lateral chambers of commerce and international consulates to discuss the current economic times, how the international community can come together to best navigate them, and how to collaborate as the community moves forward. Talk about a meeting of nations.
The majority of the groups agreed that increasing membership and developing the ability to find and reach out to members of their community was a primary focus for the coming year. Each also expressed interest in increasing communication and connectivity amongst the various international communities in the metro-Atlanta area.
Business discussions were infused with quips about which country’s team would win in this summer’s Atlanta International Soccer Fest Tournament. As quoted from one of the attendees, a major challenge for most organizations is how to “elevate from a social club to a business chamber.” Through these discussions, many of the organizations realized they were working on similar projects in industries such as renewable energies and transportation. Discussions were kept light-hearted as a few jokes were exchanged between the Swiss and the Japanese regarding the timeliness of their respective high-speed train systems.
Following conversation amongst the organizations, keynote speaker Dr. Rajeev Dhawan, Director of the Economic Forecasting Center at the Robinson College of Business at Georgia State University discussed the aftermath of the recent recession, and what can be expected as we move forward.
- Argentine-American Chamber
- Australian New Zealand Chamber of Commerce
- British-American Business Group of Atlanta
- Chilean American Chamber of Commerce of the South
- Czech North American Continent Chamber of Commerce for the USA
- Danish-American Chamber of Commerce
- German American Chamber of Commerce of the Southern US, Inc.
- Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Atlanta
- Netherlands-American Chamber
- Peruvian Business Chamber
- South African-American Chamber of Commerce
- Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce
- Swiss American Chamber of Commerce of the Southeast
- Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) Atlanta
- US India Trade Foundation
- Ukrainian-American Chamber of Commerce in Georgia
Also in attendance:
- Consul General Takuji Hanatani of Japan
- Honorary Consul General George Novak of the Czech Republic