Seven Welsh businesses with expertise ranging from engineering and patient care to grassroots sport are heading to the USA this week as part of a Welsh Government-led trade mission.
The delegation is heading to North Carolina and South Carolina, where they will meet with businesses and potential new customers and partners. It is part of the Welsh Government’s commitment to supporting Welsh businesses to grow in Wales and sell to the world, as part of its Export Action Plan.
This is the first time that a Welsh Government-led delegation will have visited the Carolinas which have a combined population of 15 million.
The USA is Wales’ top export market for goods, accounting for 15.7% (£2.9bn) of total goods exports. Over the past year, the value of Welsh goods exports to the USA increased by 69.6% (£1.2 billion). The South is a rapidly growing region in the USA with diverse economic opportunities. Due to the strength in industries, cost competitiveness of doing business, and a pro-business environment, the region offers an entry point for Welsh businesses interested in exporting to the USA.
The mission is part of a series of activities being delivered by the Welsh Government in the run up to the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, in which Wales’ first match is against the USA.
To maximise this opportunity, the delegation of businesses is being supported by the Welsh Government Office in Atlanta, Georgia alongside local partners.
The delegation will include the Football Association of Wales (FAW) Trust which will be looking to meet partners in coaching education for their online learning packages. They will jointly host a breakfast briefing with the Welsh Government featuring a virtual address by Wales Manager Rob Page. Business events to connect with local networks will take place in Greenville, South Carolina and Charlotte, North Carolina.
Wales’ Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething said:
“The USA is an important market for Wales and I’m pleased the Welsh Government can support this delegation of Welsh business talent on our first ever trade visit to the Carolinas.
“This is an excellent opportunity for our businesses to explore the market and build connections with international partners. As part of this, I am keen that we capitalise on opportunities in the run up to the FIFA World Cup, which has the potential to raise the profile of Wales in key markets, like the USA.
The mission, which is part of a wider trade mission programme delivered by the Welsh Government shows our determination to back Welsh business to grow in Wales, and to sell to the world. It underpins our clear ambition to grow Welsh export as we deliver on our Export Action Plan.”
Head of Business Development at FAW, Nick Davidson said:
“The FAW are delighted to be part of the Welsh Government USA Trade Mission to North Carolina and South Carolina. Putting Wales on the world stage during a World Cup year is a shared objective and a great opportunity for business and sport to create powerful partnerships.
We have a world-class coaching reputation and have developed a world-class coach education system starting with the Introduction to Football Coaching Certificate through to UEFA Pro Licence. Our global alumni include Mikel Arteta, Yaya Touré, Thierry Henry and Tim Cahill and we’re hoping this mission allows us to grow grassroots football (soccer) across the world."