California is one of the 10 largest economies in the world with a gross state product (GSP) of more than $2 trillion. International-related commerce (including exports and imports of goods and services, plus investments) accounts for approximately one-quarter of the state’s economy. Although trade is a nationally determined policy issue, its impact on California is immense. California exports to 229 foreign markets.

The California Chamber supports expansion of international trade and investment, fair and equitable market access for California products abroad, and elimination of disincentives that impede the international competitiveness of California business.

International Trade Business Issue

CalChamber International Trade Issues and Priorities

Highlighting its international trade priorities for 2015, CalChamber supports renewing the President’s authority to negotiate trade agreements and pending agreements with Pacific nations and the European Union.

CalChamber Council for International Trade

CalChamber Council for International Trade hosts trade events, forums, and guests.

International Activities


Looking Out for Business

Through our lobbying team and committees, we monitor state and federal legislative issues, as well as multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations on behalf of Californians doing business abroad.

Making Connections

We work as a clearinghouse of information for international trade. We encourage our members to share their international expertise, while also bridging the gap between government agencies and private companies, here and abroad.

Getting Involved

We give you as many chances as possible to grow your international business. Each year, we sponsor/co-sponsor trade and investment missions, educational programs and conferences, as well as trade and catalog shows.

Cuba Policy Trip

CalChamber Joins World Affairs Council on Cuba Policy Trip – April 2015

cuba-300-200This nation-wide 20-member delegation met with high-ranking government officials, chatted with entrepreneurs in the emerging Cuban private sector, enjoyed the work of professional artists and musicians, heard from renowned historians and convened with diplomats and economists.

Cuba Policy Trip Blog

Trade Missions

CalChamber delegations have participated in the state’s trade and investment missions. Members and CalChamber officials often participate in trade events such as International Expos and the World Economic Forum. Board members and officials have accompanied four California Governors to various worldwide destinations, including Mexico City to discuss the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA.)

Gubernatorial Trade Mission​ to Mexico – July 2014

MOU signing at Casa de CaliforniaVisit to learn more about this successful trade and investment mission led by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr​., organized by the California Chamber of Commerce and the California Foundation for Commerce and Education, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization affiliated with CalChamber.

Along with senior members of his administration and business delegates, Governor Brown traveled to Mexico City, the political capital and financial center of Mexico.

Gubernatorial Trade Mission to China – April 2013

CalChamber President/CEO Allan Zaremberg and Governor BrownThe delegation traveled throughout China and attended the opening of the California Trade and Investment Office in Shanghai, California’s first official permanent presence in China in nearly a decade. With more investment deals from China than any other state, California is positioned to capture China’s growing foreign investment. Trade Mission Blog

Past Trade Missions


CalChamber Receives President’s Export Award

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke (right) presented the award to CalChamber Vice President of International Affairs Susanne Stirling in Washington, D.C.​

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke (right) presents the award to CalChamber Vice President of International Affairs Susanne Stirling in Washington, D.C.​

President's Export Award LogoThe California Chamber of Commerce received the prestigious President’s “Excellence for Export Service Award,” the nation’s highest award to honor United States exporters.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Locke said that those honored at the November 2009 ceremony have “shown the foresight and ability to grow and prosper through a strong export strategy. Exporting U.S. manufactured goods and services plays an important role in rebuilding the American economy and creating jobs at home. With 95 percent of the world’s consumers living outside our borders, there is great potential to boost economic growth and create new jobs in America through exporting.​​​​ Alert Article


CalChamber Receives Korean Presidential Citation

Consul General Jeong Gwan Lee (left) and Consul Kwang Ho Lee (right) of the Korean Consulate General in San Francisco present the Korean Presidential Citation to Susanne Stirling.

Consul General Jeong Gwan Lee (left) and Consul Kwang Ho Lee (right) of the Korean Consulate General in San Francisco present the Korean Presidential Citation to Susanne Stirling.

On December 6, 2012, the California Chamber of Commerce received the prestigious Presidential Citation from the government of the Republic of Korea for promoting U.S.-Korea trade and commercial relations, and specifically for contributing to the passage of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA).

The CalChamber was an early supporter of the U.S.-Korea FTA, the culmination of a five-year process from negotiations, to passage and implementation.

International Events

Milken Institute Global Conference
May 1 – May 4 all-day

The Global Conference convenes some of the world’s most extraordinary people to explore solutions to today’s most pressing challenges in financial markets, industry sectors, health, government and education. Where others see problems, we seek solutions.

ExporTech: Developing Strategies for International Markets
May 4 all-day

ExporTech™ is national export assistance program that helps companies enter or expand in global markets. Jointly offered by the NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership and the U.S. Export Assistance Centers of the U.S. Department of Commerce, ExporTech applies a structured export strategy development process that assists 4-8 companies to accelerate growth. It is the only national program where each company develops a written export plan, that is vetted by a panel of experts upon completion. ExporTech efficiently connects companies with a wide range of world-class experts that help navigate the export sales process. The result is that companies rapidly expand global sales and save countless hours of effort.

Three-session program:

May 4  | June 7 | July 12

Solano Economic Development Corporation
360 Campus Lane
Fairfield, CA

U.S.-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC)
May 4 – May 5 all-day

Canada and the U.S. released a Joint Forward Plan for regulatory cooperation in the fall of 2014. That plan called for bilateral senior level discussions on regulatory cooperation. The objective of the May 4-5th sessions is to provide a single venue for senior regulators to get together with stakeholders and discuss areas of opportunity over the short-medium term. Canadian and U.S. Senior regulatory officials will be seeking stakeholder views on regulated sectors and related opportunities for efforts between regulators.

GO-Biz Grow CA Business Summit
May 5 all-day

The summit features presentations and demonstrations of programs, services and tools offered by GO-Biz and an expo featuring local small business resource partners and other state agencies. The event is open to all small business owners and small business supporters.

Zhejiang –California Investment and Trade Cooperation Symposium
May 9 @ 3:30 pm – 7:00 pm

Features of Zhejiang economic development: In 2015, the provincial GDP reaches USD 688.6 billion, ranking fourth national wide; per capita disposable income is USD 5467.2, ranking first in mainland China. Total imports and exports reached USD 347.41 billion, with an actually utilized capital of USD 16.96 billion, a director outward investment of 13.99 billion, ranking ahead among the provinces of mainland China.

Zhejiang province is strong in manufacturing, both traditional industry including textile and clothing, machinery and electronics, food and beverage, and emerging industry such as biomedicine, new energy, the Internet are in rapid development. Among the export featuring “Made in China”, more than one tenth come from Zhejiang. Zhejiang enjoys vibrant private economy. Private economy accounts for Zhejiang’s 70%-plus of tax, 60%-plus of revenue and 90%-plus of new jobs. Zhejiang boasts a large “market”, having 4300 commodity trading market. The number ranks first in China for ten consecutive years. Recent years witness the rapid development of E-commerce. In mainland China, 85% of the retail network, 70% of cross-border e-commerce transactions, 60% of the B2B e-commerce transactions are based on Zhejiang’s E-commerce platform.

Right now, Zhejiang is adjusting industrial structure, planning to shape 7 big trillion-dollar industries concerning information, environmental protection, healthcare, tourism, fashion, finance, high-end equipment and manufacturing. Especially in e-commerce industry, with world famous companies such as Alibaba, Zhejiang enjoys a very wide prospect and potential. What’s more, the G20 summit chooses Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang as the host place for its first time in China. Representatives from Hangzhou will also introduce development and opportunities in Hangzhou to American audience.

Zhejiang companies in this delegation are involved in high-end manufacturing, high-tech industry, biomedicine and environmental healthcare industry, hoping to find American cooperation partners.

More International Events

Recent News



Doing Business in Latin America: Ambassador Explains Challenges -CalChamber Alert , March 11, 2016

News and Publications


International Contacts




Susanne-Stirling-2012-300x300Susanne Stirling
Vice President, International Affairs