PORT OF LOS ANGELES’ TRADE CONNECT PROGRAM NAMED ‘GLOBAL TRADE LEADER OF THE YEAR’ BY LOS ANGELES BUSINESS JOURNAL
SAN PEDRO, Calif. – Oct. 27, 2021 – The Port of Los Angeles’ export educational outreach program Trade Connect has been named the recipient of the “Global Trade Leader of the Year” award by the Los Angeles Business Journal. The inaugural award recognizes outstanding leaders at the forefront of global trade, investment, technology and innovation.
“We are very honored to be recognized for our efforts to help small and medium-sized businesses expand into the global marketplace,” said Marisela Caraballo DiRuggiero, the Port’s Director of Trade Development, who oversees the Trade Connect program. “There is still a great deal of untapped potential for growing the Southern California export market. It has been Trade Connect’s mission to do whatever we can to encourage manufacturers and other sectors to capitalize on these important international market opportunities.”
As the busiest port in the Western Hemisphere, the Port of Los Angeles moves more than $29 billion in exports annually. For more than a decade, Trade Connect has been working to connect U.S. businesses with overseas trade and export opportunities through a variety of free trade promotion seminars—from exporting basics to advanced strategies, to topic-specific sessions on both emerging markets and specialized commodities. Trade Connect also focuses on advancing the Port’s influence on expanding trade markets, and works closely with foreign governments and the international diplomatic community to promote trade opportunities overall.
The Global Trade Leader of the Year award was announced today at the 2021 International Business Forum & Awards event hosted by the Los Angeles Business Journal. The virtual event brought together the international business community to discuss critical trade issues, and featured panel conversations with market leaders on the vital role that international business plays in the U.S. economy. Speakers included Stephen Cheung, President, World Trade Center Los Angeles, Debra Lodge, head of Corporate International Solutions at HSBC; Atul Sapra, principal of International Tax Services at RSM US LLP; and Chirag Shah, Chief Financial Officer at Cornerstone.
North America’s leading seaport by container volume and cargo value, the Port of Los Angeles facilitated $259 billion in trade during 2020. San Pedro Bay port complex operations and commerce facilitate one in nine jobs across the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura. The Port of Los Angeles has remained open with all terminals operational throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.