Commerce Officials Give Update on U.S. Program to Boost Investment

From left are Arun M. Kumar, Susanne Stirling, Allan Zaremberg, Vinai Thummalapally and Greg Mignano.

Economic development organizations in California and across the nation can turn to a program within the U.S. Department of Commerce for help in attracting, retaining and expanding business investment—SelectUSA.

​Officials from the Commerce Department stopped by the California Chamber of Commerce recently to explain the program, the first federal-wide effort to promote and facilitate business investment in the United States.​

​U.S. Department of Commerce officials meeting with Allan Zaremberg, CalChamber president and CEO, and Susanne Stirling, CalChamber vice president, international affairs, were:

  • Arun M. Kumar, director general of the U.S. and Foreign Commercial
    Service and assistant secretary for global markets;
  • Vinai Thummalapally, executive director, SelectUSA; and
  • Greg Mignano, director, Pacific Northwest Region, U.S. Commercial Service.


SelectUSA provides entities interested in investing in the United States a single point of contact at the federal level, coordinating business investment-related resources across all federal agencies.

​The program offers information about: establishing and operating a business; federal programs and services available—including grants, loans and other assistance programs; and the competitive and regulatory landscape of doing business in the United States.

​For U.S. economic development organizations, SelectUSA can leverage contacts in offices in more than 70 countries around the world. In addition, subject matter experts are available to help recruit and retain investment and share best practices.

​SelectUSA also serves as an ombudsman for investors on issues involving federal agencies.

Foreign Direct Investment

​Majority-owned U.S. affiliates of foreign firms employ approximately 590,100 workers in California, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and​.

​Commerce department officials report that since 2003, 1,765 foreign direct investment projects have been announced in California. In February, for example, Proseal America (U.K.), a packaging equipment manufacturer, announced it would open a machinery center in Sacramento to provide more localized service and support for West Coast customers.

​If projects are completed at their announced levels, they would represent more than $8.61 billion in capital investment, the Commerce Department reports.

​More information about SelectUSA is available at or by calling (202) 428-6800.

​Staff Contact: Susanne Stirling​​​

Susanne T. Stirling
Susanne T. Stirling, vice president, international affairs, has headed CalChamber international activities for more than four decades. She is an appointee of the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to the National Export Council, and serves on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce International Policy Committee, the California International Relations Foundation, and the Chile-California Council. Originally from Denmark, she studied at the University of Copenhagen and holds a B.A. in international relations from the University of the Pacific, where she served as a regent from 2012 to 2021. She earned an M.A. from the School of International Relations at the University of Southern California. See full bio.